St. Louis and St. Charles DUI / DWI Attorney
Providing quality criminal defense in DUI/DWI cases
Almost everyone knows that drinking and driving may have severe consequences, however statistics show that an estimated 26,000 Missourians are arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while intoxicated (DWI) on an annual basis. DUI and DWI are criminal offenses under Missouri law, and anyone charged with these offenses in the St. Louis or St. Charles area should contact an experienced defense attorney at the Law Offices of Kenneth P. Carp at (636) 947-3600 as soon as possible.
When can you be charged with DUI/DWI?
Like every state in the United States, Missouri has a legal driving limit of 0.08 percent blood alcohol content (BAC). If an officer stops you and believes you have been drinking, he or she may perform a chemical test, such as a Breathalyzer test or blood draw in order to determine whether your BAC is over the legal limit. If your BAC reads over 0.08 percent, a prosecutor will likely charge you with DUI, and such test results may then be used as evidence against you in your DUI case.
Even if your BAC was below the legal limit, you may still be facing criminal charges if an officer believed you were intoxicated based on your behavior or performance on field sobriety tests. In such cases, a prosecutor will likely charge you with DWI.
The legal limit is lower for anyone driving a commercial vehicle, as they may face charges with a BAC of 0.04 percent. Additionally, drivers under the legal drinking age of 21 years may be arrested for DWI with a blood alcohol limit of only 0.02 percent.
Penalties for DUI/DWI in St. Louis
The consequences for DUI or DWI are much greater than other types of routine traffic violations. For a first-time conviction, you will have a Class B misdemeanor on your record and a court may impose the following sentence:
- Two years of probation
- Extensive fines and court costs
- Mandatory alcohol evaluation and education
- At least 48 hours in jail for offenders with high BAC
These consequences substantially increase if you have prior DUI/DWI convictions on your record, and multiple DUIs may even be charged as felonies in certain cases and may involve significant state prison sentences.
In addition to court-imposed sentences, the Department of Revenue can suspend or revoke your driving privileges for a period of time, and may even require that you have an ignition interlock device installed on your vehicle to have your license reinstated.
Contact a St. Louis DUI/DWI defense attorney for help with your case
There are numerous ways an experienced attorney can defend DUI charges in order to have your case dismissed or significantly limit the penalties you may face. Because of the potentially severe consequences of a DUI or DWI, you should never try to handle your case on your own. If you have been arrested on suspicion of DUI/DWI, call (636) 947-3600 to discuss your case with a lawyer at the Law Offices of Kenneth P. Carp today.