When A DUI Charge Is Enhanced By A Child's Presence

24 February 2023
 Categories: , Blog


Even though driving under the influence (DUI) may be considered a misdemeanor in most cases, don't be fooled by that. Misdemeanors, if convicted, can carry jail time, probation, a loss of driving privileges, high costs, and more. If a child happens to be involved in a DUI, things have the potential to escalate quickly. Find out more below.

Aggravated DUI Matters

When a DUI matter is enhanced, it might be known as an aggravated DUI. That means a separate but connected issue is being considered in addition to DUI charges. Having a child under the age of 18 in your vehicle at the time of an arrest could merit such aggravated charges. In addition to the minor child issue, there are more issues that can raise a misdemeanor DUI to a higher level:

  • Blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is far higher than the state limit.
  • Trying to elude law enforcement.
  • An accident caused by a drunk driver.

What Will Aggravated Charges Mean for the Defendant?

In many cases, an aggravated DUI charge will translate to a felony charge. Felonies are punished far more aggressively than misdemeanors. It should also be mentioned that some judges have little leeway with mandatory sentencing guidelines in place for some crimes.  For some, the charges could call for a prison sentence, parole, removal of driving privileges, and more. The only way to prevent the worst from happening if you have been charged with an aggravated DUI is to speak to a criminal defense attorney and aim for getting the charges reduced or dropped.

Child Endangerment Charges

With this type of DUI enhancement, things could get more difficult for those charged. Child endangerment is an additional charge to the aggravated DUI charge. However, if the child belongs to the defendant, they could lose custody, at least temporarily. An investigation may be conducted to ensure the safety of the child going forward. In addition, there is the potential to negatively affect any court custody proceedings.

Get Help Immediately

A criminal defense attorney will know what to do to help with your case. They will investigate the roadside stop by reviewing police reports and cam footage. Many DUI cases are based on bad or weak evidence. Your lawyer will review all lab reports to determine the potential for problems with the blood draws. Everything about your arrest will be scrutinized to get your charges reduced. Don't allow yourself to be convicted of an aggravated DUI. Speak to a lawyer to find out more.

For more information, contact a DUI lawyer near you.