Mandatory Jail Time for 2nd DUI Arrest | Charlotte DWI Attorneys

Before we deal with sentencing, we first look at whether the State can prove their case. Otherwise, it does not matter what number DWI it is. However, once we turn to punishment levels, you can face mandatory jail time. As a result, we look at ways to avoid active jail time. So keep reading.

Mandatory Jail Time for Subsequent DWI Arrests

mandatory jail timeWhile most clients initially want to know about driving, they quickly turn to jail time concerns. Certainly, that is a real problem but only if convicted of DUI in the past. So here’s how sentencing works in North Carolina. After 7 years, no mandatory jail time but not totally forgiven. Instead of a “gross aggravator” (within 7 years), you have an “aggravator.” And “aggravators” are offset with certain “mitigators.” However, North Carolina DWI law, like rock and roll, never forgives. Even if arrested for a subsequent DUI 30 years later, it still counts against you.

Unlike “aggravators,” you cannot offset “gross aggravators.” Rather, any single “gross aggravator” elevates you to Level 2 punishment. And additional “gross aggravators” push you to Level 1. Unlike Levels 3,4, and 5, where community service is an option, Levels 1 and 2 require mandatory jail time. However, there are other potential options available.

Options to Mandatory Jail Time

While there are exceptions to anything, most folks with more than one DWI arrest have addiction issues. Thankfully, most judges are sympathetic to this plight if you are willing to take steps to address it. At least here in Mecklenburg County, we have successfully kept clients from going to jail even at Level 2. Rather than focus on the problem, we focus on the solution. Because you face up to 90 days in jail, we start with a SCRAM report for at least that long. Of course, you must give up all alcohol to pass this test. However, it shows the judge, through actions and not just words, that you are serious. In addition to SCRAM, you can also enroll in an in-patient rehab facility for treatment. However, this option is costly and not possible for everyone.

SCRAM Credit for Jail Time

If found sincere, a sympathetic judge can give you credit for SCRAM to reduce or eliminate mandatory jail time. Furthermore, you will be helping yourself by totally giving up alcohol or getting treatment. So you really cannot lose by taking this approach. However, if the judge thinks you are gaming the system, this strategy will backfire huge. Consequently, you must do this for the right reasons. Because it helps on so many levels, we try this plan with every client facing a subsequent DUI. Call now to see how we might be able to help you. 704-351-7979 or email robert@rjrlaw.com