Felony DUI In Colorado: Changes To The Law
Due to recent changes made to Colorado law, it is now possible to be charged with a felony after a fourth (or more) DUI. The fourth conviction includes not just Colorado charges, but previous convictions in other states. It is also more than just DUI. If you have been convicted of DUI, DWAI, vehicular homicide, or vehicular assault in the past, a simple DUI in Colorado could be a felony if it is your fourth conviction. The importance of these changes is significant, and can result in serious legal difficulties, so you need to have trusted legal counsel if you face a DUI of any kind in Colorado.
Felony Charges Are Not Mandatory, But Are Quite Likely
While not mandatory, making a fourth DUI a felony is an option for charging/sentencing that was not previously available in Colorado. Whether you are charged with a felony will be left up to the discretion of the prosecutor, and the penalties may vary widely based on that. However, the fact remains that the maximum punishment is always possible. With this higher punishment, there is more concern for those who have previous DUI convictions.
The Penalties Have Changed With the New Law
Along with the new law, there are harsher penalties for those who are convicted of a fourth DUI offense. These penalties now include:
- A fine of up to $500,000
- The potential for six years in a state prison
Whether you incur the maximum penalty or something below the top end of the threshold, the prison time and financial hardship can be devastating. For many people, recovery from these types of sentences is difficult; because of this, you need to do everything you can to fight the charges before they result in a conviction.
You Need an Advocate
Because the stakes are now higher than ever and so much depends on the facts of your particular case, you need an advocate to protect your rights. Without assertive legal help, you could find yourself with a felony conviction and the maximum possible penalty, instead of the potential for a lighter sentence and a misdemeanor on your record.
Choose Your Law Firm Wisely
At Flesch & Beck Law, in Denver, experienced drunk driving defense attorneys will work on your case. Even if you feel hopeless or your case is complex, our lawyers have the skills to provide you with a strong defense that is based on your specific situation. Proven strategies can help minimize your sentence, potentially even defeating the charges. That can allow you to move on with your life, and avoid the lengthy prison times and high fines that come with felony DUI convictions.