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North Carolina has strict drunk driving penalties

On Behalf of | May 8, 2015 | Drunk Driving |

North Carolina takes drunk driving very seriously. Aggressive prosecution of those accused of Driving While Intoxicated is the norm in the state’s criminal courts.

Those convicted of DWI face some harsh penalties. Even a Level 5 conviction has a mandatory 24-hour jail sentence that must be served even when a judge suspends the rest of the sentence. A Level 1 conviction can bring jail time of up to two years.

For a first or second offense DWI conviction, a defendant’s driver’s license can be suspended or revoked for 60 days. A third conviction nets a 90-day penalty.

The courts may also order that a defendant complete a mandatory course on Alcohol Education. Depending on the circumstances, defendants can be court-ordered to be assessed and treated for substance abuse.

A judge can order that a defendant’s vehicle be confiscated after a fourth DWI conviction even if other family members use the vehicle, too. This can create enormous logistical problems for a family. Courts also can mandate that an ignition interlock device be installed on the vehicle to prevent further instances of impaired driving. There are installation and monthly maintenance charges associated with these contraptions that can place a financial burden on defendants already struggling to cover court costs and fines.

We understand that being convicted of even a first DWI has numerous negative consequences that can affect our clients and even their family members. This is why we vigorously challenge the evidence presented by the prosecution in court. We cross-examine witnesses and can challenge the constitutionality of checkpoints.

If you have been charged with DWI in Raleigh, contact us for a confidential consultation.


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