What to Do if Charged with a DUI in Arizona

Arizona penalties for driving under the influence are among the toughest in the nation. Even for a first offense, expect to spend at least 24 hours in jail, and up to 10 days. It is imperative to not waste any time in hiring an experienced lawyer to represent you.

Implied Consent Law

When you received your Arizona’s driver license, you agreed to consent to blood or drug alcohol concentration testing if you were stopped on suspicion of driving under the influence. When you are stopped by a law enforcement officer, refusing to submit to such a test will automatically revoke your driving privileges for twelve months.

Basic Penalties

The basic penalties for a DUI first offense in Arizona include not only mandatory jail time, but a fine of not less than $1,250. Driving privileges are automatically revoked for one year. Offenders must undergo alcohol education and treatment programs. Community service is also a requirement. When you do start driving again after the revocation period ends, your vehicle must be equipped with an interlock ignition device for one year. Of course, penalties for subsequent DUIs are much harsher.

Interlock Device

This device is installed in your car and measures your breath prior to starting the vehicle. If the interlock senses alcohol, the ignition will not start. During each trip, the device goes off and requires another breath test, to ensure the driver did not consume alcohol after the initial starting of the vehicle. You may also have to put new plates on the vehicle stating an interlock device is in use.

Negligent Homicide

In a worst-case scenario, a DUI results in the death of either another passenger in the vehicle or in a vehicle involved in the accident. In Arizona, motor vehicle accidents caused by impaired drivers are the most common type of negligent homicides. Under the state statute, a person “commits negligent homicide if with criminal negligence the person causes the death of another person.” It is a class 4 felony, with a maximum punishment of three years and eight months in prison.

Contact an Attorney

You didn’t intend to commit a crime when you got behind the wheel after drinking, but under Arizona law that is what you did. If you or a loved has been arrested for a DUI, you need an experienced criminal attorney. Schedule a free consultation at The Law Offices of John Phebus. Our firm can be reached by calling 623-847-7117. or by completing our online contact form. Our office hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Evening and weekend appointments are available based on the needs of our clients.

Sources: https://www.azdot.gov/mvd/driver-services/driver-improvement/dui, http://www.azleg.gov/ars/13/01102.htm, https://www.azdot.gov/mvd/driver-services/ignition-interlock