Are you looking for answers for some of your DUI-related questions? Or, have you or someone you know been charged with a DUI out of Scottsdale or any other city in Arizona? On this webpage, you can learn more about what a DUI is and some of the finer points about DUI statute, including drug-related DUI charges and Felony DUI.
But first, the basics: Arizona has some of the harshest DUI laws in the nation. While some states consider first-time DUI offenses as civil violations, a DUI offense in Arizona generally results in, at minimum, a misdemeanor on the driver’s record. That being said, there are some key steps you can take to protect yourself in the event of a DUI citation, the first being to reach out to a qualified and experienced Scottsdale DUI lawyer.
If you have been charged with a DUI in Scottsdale, your citation most likely came from Scottsdale City Court (if it’s a misdemeanor) or Maricopa County Superior Court (if it’s a felony). No matter which court has jurisdiction over your case, a reliable defense attorney could help you understand your charges, gather evidence, and pursue the best outcome possible.
What is a Misdemeanor DUI?
Title 28 of the Arizona Revised Statutes governs all transportation-related legislation in Arizona. A.R.S. Section 28-1381 addresses misdemeanor DUI and states:
It is unlawful for a person to drive or be in actual physical control of a vehicle in this state under any of the following circumstances:
While under the influence of intoxicating liquor, any drug, a vapor releasing substance containing a toxic substance or any combination of liquor, drugs or vapor releasing substances if the person is impaired to the slightest degree.
If the person has an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more within two hours of driving or being in actual physical control of the vehicle and the alcohol concentration results from alcohol consumed either before or while driving or being in actual physical control of the vehicle.
While there is any drug defined in section 13-3401 or its metabolite in the person’s body.
If the vehicle is a commercial motor vehicle that requires a person to obtain a commercial driver license as defined in section 28-3001 and the person has an alcohol concentration of 0.04 or more.
Misdemeanor DUI’s are generally class 1 misdemeanors.
Drugs and DUI
As you can see in the statute, it is illegal for a driver to be in control of a vehicle under the influence of any drug under A.R.S. section 13-3401. However, there are some important things to note about this provision. First, the statute applies even if the drug is legal to use in Arizona. For example, if a driver was pulled over and it was discovered that they were under the influence of marijuana, a legalized drug under Prop. 207, they may still be cited for DUI. Second, there are some exceptions to this rule, notably, if you were using a drug as prescribed by a doctor, then you may be deemed not guilty of 28-1381A(3).
What is Felony DUI?
Felony DUI, also known as Aggravated DUI, is the most serious types of DUI that a driver can receive. There are 5 circumstances under which such a case can occur. These are when a driver:
Commits a DUI when their license is suspended (Class 4)
Receives 3 or more DUIs in a 7-year period (Class 4)
Commits DUI with a passenger under the age of 15 (Class 6)
Drives the wrong way on a highway while committing a DUI (Class 4)
Please note that a driver can receive multiple counts of aggravated DUI for the same arrest. For instance, if they commit a DUI on a suspended license with a passenger under the age of 15, then they would receive 2 such counts. The consequences for a felony DUI tend to be much harsher than misdemeanor, or even extreme, DUI. Not counting potential increases in jail time or fines, drivers convicted of aggravated DUI may see adverse consequences in employment, housing, firearm possession, and voting.
Contact The Law Offices of Brandon White Today!
Whether your case is a misdemeanor or Felony DUI, these driving under the influence charges are a complex type of traffic violation. Each case looks dramatically different, and every piece of evidence can play a large role in court. Our experienced attorneys (most of which are former state police officers or prosecutors) can put their combined experience to use for you and help you resolve your case, keeping your best interests at heart. Contact the Scottsdale DUI Lawyers at The Law Offices of Brandon White to schedule a complimentary strategy session for your DUI case today!