Q: The father of my kids got another DUI. He never had a license. The first 2 are older but this is his 3rd. His preliminary was waived for court this morning and I’m trying to get an idea of what’s going to happen. Current charges are BAC .02 or higher 3rd offence for DUI general impairment, failure to stop at red signal, illegal turn, following too closely, failure to yield to emergency vehicle and careless driving. (Pittsburgh, PA)
A: If this is a third DUI with a .02 BAC, the sentencing guidelines calls for a 90 day to 5- year sentence and a $1500 to $10000 fine, in addition to a laundry list of other conditions such as a drug and alcohol evaluation, alcohol highway safety classes and of course, probation. In Allegheny County, he may eligible for alternative house arrest or electronic home monitoring. However, if you mean .2, not .02, then the guidelines call for 1 to 5 years of imprisonment, which is normally a state sentence. My advice is to have him represented as early as possible by counsel. He may qualify for DUI court in Pittsburgh. This program keeps the defendant out of jail and at home on electronic monitoring but is an intensive and intrusive method of forcing people to stop drinking. If the person fails to comply with the program, they end up in state prison. Again, an attorney can guide him.
Q: My question is a generalization of what sentencing I may possibly be looking at. I appreciate your time and advice, in advance. When I was 18 in 2006 I received my first DUI in PA. I did what was asked & got off probation 2 months early. October 2014 I drove 45 minutes to spend the night with my nephew because I told him I would & wanted to keep my word. I received a 2nd DUI. It was recorded as the highest blood alcohol rate as I refused the breathalyzer. I moved to the county where this occurred so I could easily get to the RIP program they recommended & D&A treatment. The day before sentencing, my friend was helping me move. We had dinner about 4pm and each had 2 drinks. On our way back from my apt I got pulled over around 11 pm. My friend threw out a cig butt & the officer said I crossed lanes. I failed the FST & refused a breath test. I tried calling my lawyer for a continuance all night and no answer and in the am he just screamed & hung up. I have warrant(s), no lawyer or $. (Monaca, PA)
A: Am I hearing a 3rd DUI here within ten years? If my understanding is correct, you may be looking at 1-5 years in the state correctional system and a $2,500.00 minimum fine, in addition to all the normal DUI requirements, such as classes, CRN evaluation, probation, ignition interlock, driver’s license suspension, etc. My recommendation would be to get yourself into counseling or rehabilitation for your own good and consult with a lawyer about your chances with DUI court in Allegheny County. If you enter DUI court, you will need to be serious about your drinking problem. If you are not serious, you will end up in a state correctional facility which is another way of sobering up. As far as having a lawyer, you should call the Beaver County Public Defender to see if you qualify)