What is an aggravated DUI in Arizona?

If you have a DUI charge, you might be wondering what penalties you will face. If you are dealing with a DUI conviction, you can anticipate the judge to apply various guidelines to your case. In certain cases, the judge might apply a minimum sentence because there are explainable causes to your impairment. Other times, you might face harsher penalties if there were aggravating factors involved.

What is the difference between a regular DUI and an aggravated DUI? Keep reading for information on what constitutes aggravated DUI and potential punishments.

Aggravating factors

If aggravating factors are present, courts and prosecutors may be more likely to give you a maximum sentence. According to Arizona aggravated DUI laws, the most pertinent factors are:

  • Whether you have two prior DUIs within the past seven years
  • If you have a suspended driver’s license
  • If there was someone under fifteen years old in your car

In certain cases, the judge might also consider any reckless driving or personal injuries caused to another person as a result of your impairment.

Mitigating factors

On the other hand, there may be mitigating factors present that could reduce your penalties. For example, perhaps you have an otherwise spotless driving record in Arizona or your blood alcohol content barely reached 0.08 percent. While not a guarantee, these elements could lead to a more favorable outcome for you.

Defense strategies

In either case, it is important to remember there are viable defenses at your disposal so you can try to reduce or drop your charges. A criminal defense attorney can help you determine whether the police officer had reasonable suspicion, the validity of chemical tests, errors in testing or if there was a violation of any of your constitutional rights.

Facing an aggravated DUI conviction can be scary, but you may receive reduced punishments with mitigating factors and a strong defense.