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DUI/DWI in New Bern

New Bern DWI Defense Attorney

North Carolina firm protects the rights of accused motorists

Drunk driving arrests often take motorists by surprise. Many motorists don’t have any experience with the criminal justice system and have no idea what to do next if their Breathalyzer exceeds the legal limit. Carolina Law Group, headed by Tommy Kellis, is a New Bern firm that delivers comprehensive counsel to individuals accused of driving while impaired. Whether you have never been stopped before or are dealing with potentially enhanced penalties due to a previous DWI, we will safeguard your fundamental rights. Serving clients in Craven County and other North Carolina locations, our firm has the skill, experience and determination to challenge the claims of police and prosecutors.

Laws governing DWI testing

Most drivers on North Carolina roads are subject to arrest if their blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) is .08 percent or higher. Commercial vehicle drivers have a tougher standard and are considered legally intoxicated if their BAC meets or exceeds .04 percent. A zero tolerance policy exists for motorists under the age of 21, meaning that young drivers can be charged if any alcohol is found in their system. By driving on any public road in the state, you consent to a sobriety test any time an officer has a reasonable suspicion that you are impaired. Refusing to take the test leads to an automatic driver’s license suspension of one year even if it later turns out that you were not legally intoxicated.

Even if you test over the relevant limit, there are numerous ways that our criminal defense attorneys might be able to achieve a successful legal resolution. Police officers frequently cut corners and lack the legal grounds necessary to stop a vehicle. If you were pulled over merely on a hunch, even an accurate hunch, your test result could be excluded, severely hampering the prosecution’s case. Sloppy evidence handling and faulty test procedures might also strengthen your potential defense or lead the prosecutor to drop the case altogether.

Speak to a Dedicated New Bern DUI Lawyer
Call 252-636-3737 to schedule your consultation and meet at the office nearest you.

Sentences for driving while impaired North Carolina

North Carolina maintains a complex sentencing system for DUI/DWI punishment. Defendants are charged at one of six levels based on the specific factors associated with the case. If grossly aggravating factors exist, the accused motorist could face a Level II, Level I or Aggravated Level I charge that includes mandatory jail time. This can occur if you’ve been guilty of a DWI in the last seven years, if you had kids in the car or got in an accident while you were allegedly drunk or impaired by drugs. Standard aggravating factors typically involve dangerous driving behaviors frequently associated with impairment, such as speeding and weaving between lanes. Penalties for the various levels can include:

  • Level 5 — Up to a $200 fine; between 24 hours and 60 days of imprisonment
  • Level 4 — Up to a $500 fine; between 48 hours and 120 days of imprisonment
  • Level 3 — Up to a $1,000 fine; between 72 hours and 6 months of imprisonment
  • Level 2 — Up to a $2,000 fine; between 7 days and 12 months of imprisonment
  • Level 1 — Up to a $4,000 fine; between 30 days and 24 months of imprisonment
  • Aggravated Level 1 — Up to a $10,000 fine; between 12O DAYS and 36 months of imprisonment

If you have a clean record and did not commit any other traffic offenses, your case might be a Level 4 or 5. Taking steps to treat a substance addiction might also be looked upon favorably. Whatever the circumstances, our firm will fight for the best possible outcome given the particular facts in your case.

Contact a North Carolina DWI defense lawyer for a consultation

The Carolina Law Group in New Bern advocates on behalf of motorists who have been accused of drunk driving. Please call us at 252-636-3737 or contact us online to make an appointment.

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