Third-offense DUIs are heard in the magistrate court in Delaware County. They start at the lower level and then they move up to the higher level if they make it past the preliminary hearing, which is the first stage of the case.
Third-offense DUI charges are treated very seriously because it is a third repeat of the same offense, and the court is much more likely to be harsher with the defendant. Courts, prosecutors, and any sentencing body will be harsher for a third DUI charge. Therefore, it is crucial for a defendant to seek the services of a Delaware County third-offense DUI lawyer. An accomplished DUI attorney could fight for you and possibly help you reach a favorable outcome to your case.
One aggravating factor that can be seen for a third DUI is the lack of remorse. The penalties for a third-offense DUI are much higher than a first or second-time offense. For a third offense, if the person’s blood alcohol content level is between .008 and .10, the mandatory penalties are ten days in jail up to two years, a $500 to $5,000 fine, license suspension for one year, and an ignition interlock device installed in their vehicle for one year.
If their BAC is between 0.10 and 0.16, then the mandatory penalties are 90 days in jail up to five years, a $1,500 to $10,000 fine, license suspension for 18 months, and an ignition interlock for one year.
If a person has a third-offense DUI with a BAC higher than 0.16 or intoxicated under controlled substances, then they are facing one year in jail up to five years in jail, $2,500 to $10,000 fine, license suspension for 18 months, and an ignition interlock for one year.
An individual facing these penalties should contact a third-offense DUI lawyer in Delaware County as soon as possible.
When building a defense, Delaware County third-time DUI attorneys start with whether the prior two offenses should count and whether they do count under the statute as prior convictions against the person. That includes whether there was any sort of appeal taken or other actions to remove the prior conviction, whether it was truly within ten years under the required law, and any other factor that could prevent this from being considered a third DUI.
After doing this, a dedicated attorney will move to look into the stop, investigation, chemical test, credibility of the officers and the ultimate determination that the person was under the influence while operating a vehicle.
A third-offense DUI charge has serious consequences and long-term repercussions. If you are facing charges, you should obtain a lawyer who understands Delaware County courts, DUI law, and who is experienced handling these cases.
A local lawyer will also be familiar with the Delaware County court system, the filing system, the district attorney’s office’s policies, and also the state of the law under Pennsylvania so that the defendant could have the best defense possible when facing the serious consequences of a third DUI. Contact a Delaware County third-offense DUI lawyer today.