If you are charged with DUI in Mississippi, you need a legal team on your side that is ready and able to provide a strategic defense for your case. At Haug, Farrar & Franco, PLLC, our Mississippi DUI defense lawyers can protect your legal rights and help you gain a thorough understanding of the law behind your charges. Call us today at (228) 872-8752.
Mississippi is serious about prosecuting DUIs. Consequences for a DUI include losing your freedom, future school, living and working opportunities, and your driver’s license. Rather than facing these charges alone, go in with the aid of experienced counsel; contact the DUI defense attorneys at Haug, Farrar & Franco, PLLC today.
Hiring a DUI defense attorney may sound costly, but a legal advocate can help you understand your defense options, including fighting the validity of field sobriety and BAC tests and offering strong opposition against the State. The DUI defense attorneys at Haug, Farrar & Franco, PLLC do all of this, and more while building you the strongest DUI case possible.
Let our attorneys protect your legal rights and work with you by:
Requesting copies of all the prosecution documents;
Reviewing the prosecution’s case with you;
Determining the facts needed to present a strategic defense;
Discussing the options for resolution that will protect you and your legal rights;
Resolving your case through negotiations and a plea arrangement; or
Taking your case to trial.
Set up your no-risk, no-obligation consultation today.
Types of DUIs in Mississippi
It is illegal to drink and drive in Mississippi, and Mississippi is quick to prosecute those who drink and drive. There are two alcohol-impaired driving charges in the state: a common law DUI and a statutory DUI.
A common law DUI charge is founded upon any officer-observed impairment the driver displays upon a traffic stop or failure of field sobriety tests. Signs of impairment may include:
The smell of alcohol about the person;
Bloodshot, watery eyes;
Awkward balance; and
Motor skills problems.
If a driver is charged with a statutory DUI, the driver has taken and failed a blood alcohol content test. For adults, this is any blood alcohol content of .08% or more. It does not matter if the driver shows signs of impairment. If their blood alcohol content is above statutory limits, they are impaired by law.
Anyone under twenty-one is considered impaired at a blood alcohol content of .02% or above. Mississippi has a zero-tolerance policy for minors driving under the influence, and special penalties apply for minors convicted of DUI.
When a driver in Mississippi accepts their state driver’s license, they submit to a breath, urine, or blood alcohol test upon request by a police officer. This is called implied consent. Any refusal will result in a license forfeiture for ninety days.
Penalties for DUIs in Mississippi
Penalties for DUIs in Mississippi are different depending on the number of DUIs a driver has in their past. The penalties for a first through a fourth DUI are as follows:
First DUI: A first DUI carries a fine ranging from $250-$1,000 and up to forty-eight hours in jail. An Alcohol Safety Education Course is required. The trial for a first DUI occurs in either a Justice Court or a Municipal Court.
There is the possibility of a non-adjudication for a first DUI. This is a program that allows charged individuals to plead guilty, keep the DUI off of their driving record, and have the DUI expunged after five years. To qualify, an individual cannot have any previous DUIs, and their blood alcohol content cannot be .16% or above.
Second DUI: A second DUI offense within five years of the first DUI charge can result in a misdemeanor. The fines are $600-$1,500, and possible jail time ranges from 5-6 days. The driver must also participate in community service from ten days to six months.
Third DUI: A third DUI in 5 years is a felony DUI. The driver is fined between $2,000 and $5,000 and must serve one to five years in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections.
Fourth DUI: A fourth DUI is a felony DUI. The fine ranges from $3,000-$10,000, and he or she must serve between two to ten years in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections.
Minor DUI: A minor with a DUI may qualify for a non-adjudication for a first offense. There is a $250 fine, and an alcohol safety program is required. Minors also face lost driving privileges, increased insurance rates, and potential effects on job and educational opportunities.
DUIs and Driver’s Licenses in Mississippi
DUIs in Mississippi also impact a driver’s license. Driving privileges are restricted or suspended, and restricted driving is with the use of an ignition interlock device. An ignition interlock device attaches to your vehicle’s ignition system. Before starting your vehicle, you will need to submit a breath sample into the handheld portion of the device that tests for the presence of alcohol. The vehicle will only start when a passing breath sample is provided.
Contact a Mississippi DUI Defense Attorney
If you need more information about Mississippi’s common law and statutory DUIs and their effects on your driver’s license, contact the experienced DUI attorneys at Haug, Farrar & Franco, PLLC. Whether this is your first DUI offense or fourth, receiving a DUI in Mississippi can have serious, lifelong consequences.
DUIs carry hefty fines, jail time or prison time, and possible license revocation. Having solid legal defense from Haug, Farrar & Franco, PLLC and knowing your rights can make the difference between lessening any potential criminal charges against you and having to go to jail or prison. Contact us anytime to schedule your free case consultation.