When prosecutors go to investigate a first-time DUI case, they will take it seriously. They will speak with the officer and find out exactly what happened, what your blood alcohol content (BAC) was, and they will do a thorough investigation into the circumstances behind the arrest and behind your behavior. In Fairfax County, a Chantilly DUI case is not just going to be dropped and it is not just going to go away, so a DUI attorney in Chantilly is essential in representing your interests in your case. An experienced attorney can assist in protecting your rights and building a strong defense based on the circumstances surrounding the arrest.
The penalties for a first-time DUI are a fine of up to $2,500 and up to a year in jail. There is a mandatory one-year license suspension as well as a requirement that the defendant successfully completed a probationary program. First-time DUI charges in Chantilly are typically heard in the Fairfax County Courthouse in the General District Court Level.
Depending on what the person’s blood alcohol level is, even a first-time DUI offense could carry a mandatory minimum jail sentence. If somebody has a blood alcohol level of 0.15% to 0.20%, they are going to be looking at five mandatory minimum days in addition to whatever the judge gives them, and if somebody has more than 0.20%, they are going to be looking at ten mandatory minimum days in jail.
Further, there is no diversion program available as an alternative for a first-offense DUI, and there is no offender probation program that prosecutors in Fairfax are going to offer to a first-time DUI offender in Chantilly. That type of probation is going to come part and parcel with a DUI conviction, but the DUI itself is not going to go away making it important that an experienced DUI lawyer in Chantilly is by your side.
Courts take all DUI charges seriously. They are going to try to heavily prosecute those who are driving under the influence. Because they are going to see this person as a danger to the community, they are going to want to prevent that person from doing it again. They will often make that person go through a series of treatments to ensure the person understands the consequences of their actions.
For first-time DUIs, there is not a jury, so someone facing charges is only going to have the judge hear their case. If they appeal up to circuit court they might get a jury, but it is going to depend on the facts of their case whether or not a jury or judge would be a better choice. Having a Chantilly DUI attorney may be one of the best ideas on appeal, but whether a jury is right depends on the facts of someone’s case.
Depending on someone’s case and their criminal history, there are factors that a Chantilly DUI attorney can present during the negotiation process with the prosecutor to help their clients.