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In Virginia, a first offense DUI is categorized as a class one misdemeanor. A third offense or subsequent DUI is categorized as a felony. A DUI conviction carries a penalty of a potential one year of jail time and other severe sanctions, involving loss of license. The penalties for a DUI vary widely depending on prior convictions, and blood alcohol content (BAC). A DUI conviction can have vast impacts on your life such as loss of employment, suspension or revocation of a security clearance, and college admission or enrollment issues. There are many unique defenses to a charge of DUI/DWI. We are knowledgeable in the technical defenses and arguments involved in this type of charge. Schedule a consult with us to discuss all possible defenses, and get a better understanding of the process.
Implied consent applies when a driver is operating a vehicle on Virginia’s public highways. What this means is that you have legally consented to testing your breath or blood to establish your blood alcohol content. The term “public highways” carries a specific statutory definition which must be established if implied consent is to apply. Should you unreasonably refuse to submit to a breath or blood test, you will likely be charged with “refusal” as well as a DUI. A first offense refusal is an infraction, not a misdemeanor. However, a first offense refusal conviction will result in a loss of license for an additional 12 months (this will be in addition to the 12-month loss of license which will result from a DUI conviction).
A charge of first-time assault and battery and assault and battery against a household or family member is a class 1 misdemeanor. An unwanted, rude touching of another person is considered a battery if done willfully and in an angry manner. If such an act is directed at a “household or family member,” the matter will originate in the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court. If you are facing this type of charge, you should expect a protective order to follow. The conditions of a protective order can be onerous and consenting to a protective order can have lasting impacts on other privileges in the state of Virginia. Prior to entering a plea, consenting to a protective order, or discussing these matters with the complainant, you should discuss your case and all defenses with a criminal defense attorney.
Traffic offenses can range from a charge of simple speeding, a mere infraction, to reckless driving, a class one misdemeanor in Virginia. These charges can result in hefty fines, possible jail time, insurance, and employment implications. Often times, there are technical defenses to these types of charges. For example, in a speeding charge, radar is typically only accurate if used in the proper direction. Obtaining all of the information relied on in these types of cases is crucial for crafting your defense.
Schedule a consultation for more information about your specific situation.