What Happens to Drivers Arrested for Operating Under the Influence?
Chances are you have heard about the alarming OUI (operating under the influence) statistics across the state and the nation, and you might even know someone personally who has been involved with a DUI crime at one point or another. The statistics and the stories you hear at work, in your neighborhood, and around your community are plentiful for a reason: driving under the influence is, sadly, a common crime. The fact that it is so common does not make it acceptable, though; driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a serious criminal offense and is treated as such by Connecticut State law.
How the Offense Is Determined
The state of Connecticut considers driving to be a privilege that one must earn and keep. The state’s Implied Consent Law says that any driver who operates a vehicle is considered to automatically give their consent for alcohol testing the moment they get behind the wheel. In short, if you drive, you are technically--by law--agreeing to be tested for alcohol consumption, should you be pulled over. The state retains its right to prosecute with or without direct evidence of your BAC level. This prosecution is determined by your ability to drive. If you are found to be impaired and your driving ability is affected, the state has the right to prosecute.
The Fate of the Offender
One of the most obvious consequences of operating under the influence is the loss of your license. Drivers found to have a BAC of .08 or higher are deemed guilty of operating under the influence. At that point, their license can be taken away via the DMV and court conviction. At the scene of the crime, the driver is usually detained and read their rights, and then their vehicle is towed at their expense. They are escorted to jail by police and are held there until they are bailed out or released on their own recognizance. License suspension is in addition to any other penalties or requirements that the court may decide to serve the offender. In addition, an IID (Installation of an Ignition Interlock Device) will be mandatory for any and all alcohol-related license suspensions.
The effects of a drunk driving conviction are far-reaching, impacting more than just a driver’s license; they impact everyone involved emotionally, mentally, and, often, physically. Injuries and fatalities abound, leaving the victims and offenders with irreversible damage. If you have been involved with a drunk driving incident, consult an experienced Fairfield County criminal defense attorney today to protect your rights. Contact the Law Offices of Daniel P. Weiner at 203-348-5846.