Nevada DUI Charges
Driving under the influence in most states, including Nevada, does not only mean driving under the influence of alcohol. It also means driving under the influence of drugs or a combination of drugs and alcohol together. When an individual is held for having a blood alcohol content above the legal limit of 0.08 percent, he or she will be charged with one of two charges.
The first is called per se charges where an individual will be tried simply for having a blood alcohol content level above the legal limit. In these cases an individual will not be tried for being impaired while driving. The prosecutor will present the individual’s blood alcohol content percentage to the jury of six. If only five find the defendant guilty the charge will not withstand. The individual may choose to be tried by a judge rather than a jury, at his or her own discretion.
In drunk driving cases an individual may also be tried for impairment instead of intoxication. In these cases the prosecution will provide evidence to show that the individual was impaired. Driving patterns, blood alcohol content, chemical tests, physical appearance, and field sobriety tests will often be the evidence in impairment cases. At times individuals are not convicted for impairment even if their blood alcohol content levels exceed the 0.08 percent level, as some are not impaired at that level.
Nevada DUI Basics
When an individual obtains a driver’s license he or she is subject to implied consent when intoxicated. Under this implied consent an individual is required to submit to chemical testing when requested by a police officer. If an individual refuses his or her driver’s license will automatically be suspended. The court will also take the testing refusal into account and infer that the individual is guilty of drunk driving.
Nevada DUI Consequences
Punishments for driving under the influence in Nevada are based on the number of prior offenses.
Nevada has a seven-year washout period where past DUI offenses will not be used as priors if they occurred seven or more years prior to the current offense. A first DUI offense can earn imprisonment between forty-eight hours and six months, ninety hours of community service, a fine between three hundred forty dollars and eleven hundred seventy-five dollars, driver’s license suspension for ninety days, and other alcohol and drug assessments.
A second DUI offense can earn imprisonment between ten days and six months, a fine between six hundred seventy-five dollars and eleven hundred seventy five dollars, driver’s license suspension for one year, two hundred hours of community service, and other evaluations.
A third or subsequent DUI offense can earn imprisonment terms between one year and six years in a state prison, a fine between two thousand eighty-five dollars and five thousand eighty-five dollars, driver’s license suspension for three years, an interlocking device between twelve months and thirty-six months after release from incarceration, and evaluations. DUI offenses can be aggravated if the individual’s blood alcohol content was twice the legal limit, if a minor was in the vehicle at the time of the arrest, if the individual was driving significantly over the speed limit, or if others were injured.