Madison DUI Attorney
Get Trial-Tested Experience On Your Side
Facing a DUI charge for the first time in your life can be a frightening, frustrating, and emotionally overwhelming experience. A conviction can result in serious criminal penalties, such as driver’s license suspension, fines, and even jail time. Furthermore, having a criminal record can make finding work, applying for college, or living a normal life extremely difficult. Your best chance to avoid a conviction is to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney.
At The Coon Law Firm, PLLC, we are ready to protect your rights and freedom throughout the legal process. Our Madison DUI lawyer has handled more than 500 criminal cases throughout Mississippi and Louisiana and understands what it takes to help you get the best possible outcome in your case. Do not wait to let us help you avoid harsh criminal penalties.
Mississippi’s DUI Laws
Also known as operating under the influence (OUI), driving under the influence (DUI) means driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08 percent or higher (at least .04 percent for commercial drivers), while intoxicated by a drug or substance, or while intoxicated with both alcohol and drugs. While a first or second offense within five years is a misdemeanor, a third offense is a felony, no matter how long it has been since the last DUI conviction.
What are the Penalties for DUI?
The following is a breakdown of the DUI penalties for a first offense in Mississippi:
Jail Sentence of Up to 48 Hours
A Fine of No More Than $1,000
Driver’s License Suspension for Up to 120 Days
The following is a breakdown of the DUI penalties for a second offense in Mississippi:
A Jail Term of Up to Six Months
Maximum Fine of $1,500
Driver’s License Suspension for Up to One Year.
The following is a breakdown of the DUI penalties for a third offense in Mississippi:
Imprisonment for Up to 5 Years
Fines Not Exceeding $5,000
Driver’s License Suspension for Three Years.
However, the existence of any aggravating factors may lead to increased penalties. For example, if a DUI involves a child passenger who is younger than 16 years of age, you could face a separate charge of child endangerment, which is punishable by a maximum 12-month jail term and a fine of up to $1,000. If a DUI involves an injury or death, you could face up to 25 years in prison and fines worth up to $10,000.
Field Sobriety Tests
The Standardized Field Sobriety Test (SFST) is made of up 3 individual tests:
Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN) Test - In this test, the officer will move a pen or small object back and forth and observe the person's eyes to look for signs that they are under the influence.
Walk-and-Turn Test - In this test, the officer instructs the person to take about nine steps in a straight line and then return.
One-Leg Stand Test - In this test, the officer instructs the person to stand with one foot off the ground and hold it for about until told to put it down.
The goal of these tests is to help the officer determine if the person has been operating a vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol. During the tests, the officer is looking for signs that the person is impaired, such as not being able to keep their balance or not following the instructions properly.
What is Non-Adjudication?
If you have been charged with a first DUI offense, you may be eligible for non-adjudication, which means a judge issues a stay on your sentence and instead requires you to complete an alcohol safety program, have an ignition interlock device (IID) installed in your vehicle(s) for 120 days, and pay fines and other court-related fees. Successfully completing the program could result in avoiding normal penalties associated with DUI, like jail time.
What is Implied Consent?
According to Mississippi “implied consent” laws, all drivers who are lawfully arrested for DUI must submit a chemical test (e.g. breath or blood test). Anyone who refuses will have their driver’s license confiscated and issued a 90-day suspension. Anyone with a prior DUI conviction or post-arrest chemical test refusal will face a suspension lasting up to one year.
Request a Consultation Today
Due to the seriousness of the penalties you face, having a knowledgeable DUI defense lawyer can make a significant difference in your case. Whether you are facing your first DUI charge or fourth, our Madison DUI attorney can provide effective and personalized legal representation to either get your charges/penalties substantially reduced or your entire case dismissed.