Every citizen has a fundamental right to own a vehicle and drive it on public roads, with a valid license. However, to ensure the safety of all drivers, there are laws in place that dictate how a driver must behave while operating a vehicle. One of these laws is driving under the influence (DUI), which refers to when a driver uses a vehicle while impaired by drugs or alcohol.
Penalties for Driving Under the Influence in Michigan
It is illegal to operate a vehicle in Michigan while under drugs or alcohol. If you are caught driving under the influence (DUI), you will be subject to arrest and may face severe penalties.
If you are caught driving while drunk in Michigan, your penalties will depend on several factors, including your blood alcohol content (BAC) and whether you have any prior DUI convictions. If your BAC is 0.08% or higher, you will be charged with a DUI. If your BAC is 0.17% or higher, you will be charged with a Super Drunk DUI, with harsher penalties.
If you are convicted of your first DUI, you may face up to 93 days in jail and a fine of $500. Your driver’s license will also be suspended for 30 days. If you refuse to submit to a chemical test, your license will be suspended.
If you are convicted of a second DUI offense, you may spend up to one year in jail and be fined $1,000. Your driver’s license will also be suspended for one year. If you refuse to take a chemical test, your license will be suspended for two years.
If you are convicted of a third DUI in Michigan, you will be sentenced to up to 5 years in prison and fined $5,000. Your driver’s license will also be permanently revoked.
If you are convicted of DUI, and someone is injured, you may go to prison for up to 5 years and pay a fine of $5,000. Similarly, if you are convicted of DUI, and it causes someone to die, you may go to prison for up to 15 years and pay a fine of $10,000. If somebody dies due to your DUI, the law will see it as a more serious crime, such as vehicular manslaughter. In some cases, the death from DUI may be upgraded to 2nd-degree murder under the Watson Murder Statute.
The Watson Murder Statute
The Watson Murder Statute was enacted to ensure that drivers who knowingly operate a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol and cause the death of another person are held accountable for their actions.
Under the Watson Murder Statute, if you are convicted of DUI causing death, you will face a prison sentence of 15 years to life. This is in addition to any other penalties you may face, such as a fine of up to $10,000 and the loss of your driver’s license.
What to Do When Faced With DUI Charges
The penalties for DUI are severe, and it is essential to know the laws before you get behind the wheel. If you are convicted of DUI, you will have a criminal record that can follow you for the rest of your life. You may also face other penalties, such as losing your job or driver’s license. If you face DUI charges, it is essential to contact an experienced DUI attorney who can help you navigate the legal process and ensure that your rights are protected. Fran Murphy Law is a criminal defense law firm specializing in DUI cases. They have experienced attorneys who will fight for your rights and ensure you receive the best possible outcome in your case.