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DWI North Carolina
The legal blood alcohol content (BAC) for drivers 21 and over is .08% or higher in the State of North Carolina. For underage drivers North Carolina operates a zero tolerance policy and the BAC for commercial vehicle drivers is .04%.
The penalties for a North Carolina DWI depend on your criminal history as well as the circumstances surrounding your case. While most DWIs are considered a misdemeanor offense, you could be charged with a felony if an alcohol-related accident led to serious injuries and/or death.
North Carolina classifies DWI offenses by levels. Level 1 is the most serious; level 5 is the least serious. If you are convicted of a level 5 offense, you could be sentenced to 60 days in jail (though this can be waived in lieu of community service). The penalties for a level 1 offense include a maximum one-year jail sentence with at least 30 days in jail.
• 24 hours (for level 5 offender)
• $200 fine (for level 5 offender)
• 60 days to 1 year license suspension
• 4 days jail
• Fine ranges depending on level
• 1 to 4 years (if previous DWI was within 3 years)
• Ignition interlock device required
• 14-30 days jail (up to two years)
• Fines Ranges depending on level
• 1 year to permanent (if last previous was within 5 years) License Suspension
• Ignition interlock device required, If license restored, required for 7 years
Grossly Aggravating Factors
The grossly aggravating factors of a DWI in North Carolina present the most serious of aggravating circumstances involved in a DWI as it relates to punishment. If a driver is found to have 2 (TWO) of these grossly aggravating factors when arrested for a DWI they can expect a "Level One Punishment". If a driver has 1(One) grossly aggravating factor they can expect a "Level Two Punishment"
These are the Grossly Aggravating Factors
• Prior DWI Conviction Within 7 Years
• DWI While License is Suspended for a Previous DWI
Serious Injury to Another Person While DWI
• Child Under 16 in Vehicle While DWI
• Level One Punishment
• Jail – From 30 Days to 24 Months
• Fine – Up to $4,000
Level Two Punishment
Level two punishment is applied to a North Carolina DWI conviction that has 1 (ONE) Grossly Aggravating Factor.
• Jail – 7 Days to 12 Months
• Fine – Up to $2,000
NC DWI Aggravating and Mitigating Factors
Aggravating and mitigating factors are the other two "Factors" involved in determining DWI punishment in North Carolina. Assuming there are no "Grossly Aggravating Factors" involved a judge is left to weigh the aggravating and mitigating factors to determine the fate of the convicted.
• Blood Alcohol Level of .15 or Above
• Reckless Driving / Accident
• Driver License Revoked
• Prior Convictions for DWI
• Speeding While Attempting to Elude Officers•
• Speeding 30 MPH Over the Legal Limit
• Passing A School Bus Illegally
• Slight Impairment where test was unavailable
• Safe Driving Record
• Alcohol Concentration Did not Exceed .09
• Driving Lawfully (except for impairment) at time of Offense
• Impaired by Prescribed Dosage of Legal Medication
• Voluntary Submission to Mental Heath Facility for Assessment
In some circumstances, a plea bargain of "wet reckless" might be accepted by the prosecution in North Carolina. A "wet reckless," or a conviction of reckless driving involving alcohol, is usually made as a result of a plea bargain in which a charge of drunk driving is reduced to a case of reckless driving. A plea bargain of wet reckless might occur when the amount of alcohol is borderline illegal, there was no accident, and the defendant has no prior record. But if there is a subsequent drunk driving conviction, the "wet reckless" is usually considered a prior drunk driving conviction; the resulting sentence can be what's required for a second DUI/DWI conviction.
Search North Carolina County DWI Records
New Hanover County
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