What is Aggravated DWI?
A DWI offense in New Hampshire is a serious crime. Even first time DWI convictions can result in jail time, hefty fines, and license suspensions. Further convictions can land defendants with ignition interlocks and lengthy license suspensions.
However, these are just the consequences of a DWI conviction that results without any aggravating factors. Aggravating factors are certain circumstances that apply to a DWI charge that "aggravate" or elevate the punishments of the crime.
When a DWI offender has aggravating circumstances that might apply, such as seriously injuring another person, they will face much greater consequences than they would if they were simply stopped at a checkpoint.
If the State can prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, the basic elements of DWI, along with at least one additional “aggravating” factor, you may be charged with aggravated DWI.
Aggravating factors can come in a number of forms. These factors extend past merely driving over the legal limit, and consider the results of any accident or other effects of the defendant's drunk driving. Factors that can aggravate a DWI charge include:
- Driving at or above 30 miles per hour in excess of the posted speed limit;
- Causing a motor vehicle accident that resulted in serious bodily injury to yourself or someone else (which can elevate the charge of aggravated DWI to a felony-level offense);
- An attempt to flee or hide from the police;
- Traveling with a passenger in the car whom is less than 16 years old; and
- Operating a vehicle with an alcohol concentration of over .16.
Most often, individuals charged with aggravated DWI in NH have submitted to a blood or breath test which revealed an alcohol concentration of.16 or greater – that is, a level double NH’s legal limit of impairment of.08. The NH DWI Lawyers at Tenn And Tenn, P.A. have more than 20 years of experience helping individuals charged with Aggravated DWI. Contact us today to discuss your criminal charge.
Penalties for an Aggravated DWI in New Hampshrie
If you are convicted of aggravated DWI, you face severe criminal penalties, including incarceration. If convicted of a class A misdemeanor for aggravated DWI, penalties include, among other things:
- A conviction for a Class A Misdemeanor;
- A fine of not less than $750, plus the court imposed penalty assessment of 24%;
- A mandatory minimal jail sentence of not less than 17 consecutive days in the House of Corrections, of which 12 days shall be suspended. (The maximum jail sentence is one year);
- A referral to the Impaired Driver Care Management Program to schedule a full substance use disorder evaluation at your expense;
- A substance use disorder evaluation within 30 days of release from jail, completion of the required substance use disorder evaluation within 60 days of release, and compliance with any on-going service plan that is developed as part of the evaluation, as well as payment for these programs at your own expense;
- A suspension of your driver’s license for not less than 18 months and up to 2 years; and
- Installation of an Ignition Interlock device in your vehicle for not less than 12 months nor more than 2 years at your expense.
Also, if convicted of aggravated DWI because you were transporting a person under the age of sixteen, you will be sentenced to a maximum license loss of two years.
As the above penalties make clear, aggravated DWI in NH is a serious offense. The penalties are harsh and have a long-term impact on your life and livelihood, including your ability to obtain and retain employment. Prosecutors and judges alike view aggravated DWI as a very serious criminal offense. Having a motor vehicle license in NH is a privilege. Driving with a Blood Alcohol Content of a .16, more than twice the legal limit, can land you in jail.
The NH DUI attorneys at Tenn And Tenn, P.A. have been helping citizens accused of DWI and Aggravated DWI for more than 20 years. The lawyers at Tenn And Tenn, P.A. have been voted among the The Best Lawyers in America®, and have been recognized by the prestigious Super Lawyers® Magazine, an industry standard for ranking the professional achievement of lawyers throughout the United States.
If you have any questions concerning your NH criminal charge, contact Tenn And Tenn, P.A. today.
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