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Seasoned DUI Attorneys
Serving White, Putnam, Overton, Macon, Trousdale, Warren, and Van Buren Counties in Middle Tennessee
If you’ve been there, you know that awful feeling. The minute you spotted those blue lights approaching, your pulse started racing, you felt a sinking feeling in your stomach, and panic began to set it. If you are reading this, you may already be on the other side of a DUI stop, having been arrested, booked, and made bond. That terrible night may be just a blur, but you have perfect clarity now – and you probably have a lot of questions about what a drunk driving conviction could mean for your future. The experienced Tennessee drunk driving defense attorneys at Griffin Law Group, PLLC have handled many cases similar to yours and are here to offer advice, support, and the most effective criminal defense possible under the circumstances of your case.
Many people wonder whether driving under the influence (also referred to as “driving while intoxicated” or “DWI”) is a felony or a misdemeanor. The answer to that question is more complex than you may expect. Simply put, an arrest for drunk or impaired driving can result in either a misdemeanor or felony charge, depending on the circumstances. For most people being charged with a DUI-first offense pursuant to T.C.A. § 55-10-401, the case will be prosecuted as a misdemeanor, which means that the maximum punishment, if convicted, is 11 months and 29 days in jail, but subsequent offenses can result in harsher punishment.
In addition to the possibility of spending one day short of a year in the county jail, a driving under the influence conviction can result in other significant punishment. These include:
A fine of between $350 and $1500 and payment of court costs, which can add up to several thousand dollars;
Loss of normal driving privileges for a year or longer, along with reinstatement fees when the suspended license is eligible to be lifted;
A court order requiring installation of an ignition interlock device in your vehicle;
Attendance at a DUI education or alcohol and drug treatment program; and
Restitution to anyone who was injured as a result of your drunk driving (such as an automobile accident victim).
Additionally, a DUI conviction will stay on your record for the rest of your life and can be used to enhance punishment, should you be arrested for subsequent drunk driving or other criminal offenses. It can even affect your ability to get certain types of jobs, such as a position as a professional truck driver or forklift operator.
Fortunately, there are sometimes defenses to an accusation of driving while drunk. Every case is different, so speaking with a knowledgeable criminal litigation lawyer about the details of your arrest is crucial. Our seasoned Sparta and Cookeville DUI attorneys can help you understand your legal rights both during and after arrest.
Unfortunately, law enforcement officers can sometimes overstep their bounds or even violate an individual’s Constitutional rights during a stop or arrest. If it can be proven in court that a deputy or trooper violated your 4th Amendment right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures, it may be possible to exclude certain evidence – potentially even the results of a blood alcohol test or intoximeter reading. Without this crucial evidence, it will become extremely difficult for the State to convict a jury of your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
Our dedicated team of assertive and determined Upper Cumberland criminal defense lawyers can help you assess your particular situation, review evidence from your arrest, and assist you with preparing for trial or negotiating a plea agreement to a lesser charge or less severe punishment. Call us today at 931-837-2050 to schedule an appointment with a member of the Griffin Law Group, PLLC legal team. We are currently reviewing cases from Sparta, Cookeville, Livingston, Layfayette, Hartsville, McMinnville, Spencer, and the surrounding area.
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