Colorado DUI Attorney
COLORADO DWI CONSEQUENCES
Colorado's DUI (a.k.a. DWI or OUI) laws are the toughest in the nation. The penalties BELOW are for a Drunk Driving Conviction in Colorado. Consequences range from probation or in-home detention to a felony prison sentence. Click the appropriate category below to see what you are facing.
24-48 hours of public service, 24 hours of which are mandatory and cannot be suspended by the court. Two (2) days to 180 days in jail, a fine of at least $200 but not more than $500. All jail time may be suspended if you complete and pay for an alcohol drug education as determined by the court. The court may impose probation , not to exceed two years.
FIRST DWAI Over 0.20 BAC
24-48 hours of public service, 24 hours of which are mandatory and cannot be suspended by the court. A fine of $200 to $500. Ten (10) days to one (1) year in jail, the minimum 10 days 10 days of jail may not be suspended. The jail time may be served on work release or home detention if approved by the court. The court may impose probation, not to exceed two years.
48-96 hours of public service, 48 hours of which are mandatory and cannot be suspended by the court. Five (5) days to one (1) year in jail, and a fine of at least $600 but not more than $1000. The minimum jail time may be suspended if you complete and pay for an alcohol/drug education program as determined by the court. The court may impose probation not to exceed two years.
FIRST DUI Over 0.2 BAC
48-96 hours of public service, 48 hours of which are mandatory and cannot be suspended by the court. Ten (10) days minimum to one year in jail, and a fine of at least $600 but not more than $1000. The minimum 10 days jail may not be suspended. the jail time may be completed on work release or in-home detention, if approved by the court. The court may impose probation not to exceed two years.
48-120 hours of public service, 48 hours of which are mandatory and cannot be suspended by the court. Ten(10) days to one (1) year in jail without credit for good time, time-served etc., and a fine of at least $600 but not more than $1500. In home work release or in-home detention if approved by the court is available. The court must impose at least two years of probation - and one year of suspended jail to enforce completion of probation.
PRIOR Within 5 YEARS
IF THE PRIOR CONVICTION WAS WITHIN FIVE YEARS the jail sentence required above may not be served as in-home detention. Work release, education release, and medical release to participate in an alcohol/drug education treatment program may be approved by the court.
THIRD DUI OR DWAI
Three or More Offenses: DUI, DUI Per Se, DWAI or Habitual User With Two or More Prior DUI, DUI Per Se, DWAI, Vehicular Assault, Vehicular Homicide, DUR Alcohol, or a prior Habitual User: 48-120 hours of public service, 48 hours of which are mandatory. Sixty (60)days to one (1)year in jail, a fine of at least $600 but no more than $1500. The minimum sixty days of jail are mandatory, and must be served consecutively, and are not eligible for good time, earned time or trusty prisoner status. The jail time may not be served on in-home detention. Work release, education release, and medical release to participate in an alcohol/drug education/treatment program may be approved by the court. The court must impose probation of at least two (2) years beginning upon commencement of the sentence and may impose up to an additional two years of probation. Probation shall include Level II Education and may include alcohol monitoring and interlock. The court must impose a suspended one year sentence for which no credit is given for any jail served as part of the initial sentence.
COLORADO FELONY DUI
Beginning in August 2015 a fourth or subsequent DUI, DWAI or DUID will be punished as a felony. Colorado House Bill 15-1043
Avoiding DUI Penalties
What steps you take to defend a Colorado DUI arrest can greatly influence the outcome of your case. Here are a few simple things you should do to protect your rights:
Documents given to you at the time of your release may contain information which will form the basis of a strong legal defense. The summons, Affidavit and Notice of Revocation and any other documents from the police or detox center should be retained for review by your counselor. For example, things a DUI attorney looks for are whether your chemical test was taken within the two hour time limit mandated by law. Documents that establish the time of arrest, location of police contact, etc. can help establish that the police didn't conduct a valid chemical test within the time allowed. You should also preserve credit card receipts, cell phone records, tow truck receipts and similar documents as these may help if the time of "actual physical control" of a vehicle is an issue.
Any experienced DUI lawyer in the Denver metro area will tell you that as time passes you will forget important details about your case. While certain facts may seem insignificant to you, these same facts in the hands of an experienced attorney could mean the difference between conviction and acquittal. Talk to passengers, friends and family to ask them what they remember. Police are trained to take notes about things that might incriminate you but they purposely exclude facts from their reports that might exonerate you - so its up to you to bring to your attorney's attention facts that might help your case. Writing a narrative is one way to do this.
Write down everything you remember about what happened leading up to contact with the police. Include a list of what you had to drink and when you drank it. Detail everything you said and that the police said up to the time you were released. Did you see a video surveillance camera in the police car or at the police station where you were given an alcohol test? These notes could be helpful in formulating a defense or to refresh your memory months later during a trial or other hearing.
REQUEST DMV HEARING
Except in rare instances, it is always a good idea to request a hearing concerning revocation of your drivers license for "driving with excessive alcohol content" or "refusal." If you took a breath test or refused any test and you were issued an Affidavit and Notice of Revocation you should request a hearing, in writing, with the Department of Revenue within seven days. Failure to do so will not only result in loss of your driver's license but also loss of your right to a hearing during which you might save your license. In order to make sure that the written request is made properly, consult a competent attorney prior to going to DMV if possible. If you took a blood test, the hearing request must be made within a time period that will be specified in correspondence from the Colorado DMV. When you go to a DMV office to request a hearing, you may also wish to obtain a Colorado photo ID card.