March 01, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/
-- The recent arrest of Smyrna resident Matthew N. Fabiszak for his fifth DUI has opened up a public dialogue about the issue of repeat DUI offenders. Delaware takes driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs very seriously, but that hasn't stopped this driver from getting behind the wheel intoxicated five times. He is now facing myriad charges resulting from the most recent drunk driving arrest. His case is an extreme example, but anyone convicted of DUI faces severe penalties that can have a long-term impact.
A DUI conviction in Delaware
comes with serious consequences. First-time drunk driving charges can result in:
- Up to a year in jail
- Substantial fines, between $500 and $1,500
- License suspension for 12-24 months
- Random drug testing
- A criminal record (first-time DUI is a Class II misdemeanor)
Delaware laws governing subsequent DUIs
Subsequent DUI convictions are even more detrimental, coming with:
- Mandatory incarceration between 60 days and 18 months
- Larger fines, ranging from $575 to nearly $2,500
- Several years' worth of license suspension (from 24 to 60 months)
- Mandatory ignition interlock device (which costs hundreds to install, and requires monthly maintenance fees)
- Mandatory in-depth substance abuse counseling or treatment which could span the course of several months
- Felony-level criminal history (for third offense DUI within a five-year span or a fourth or above DUI charges)
Even though the serious consequences of DUI
are fairly well-known, Delaware police still stop thousands of drivers a year, and alcohol is involved in nearly 40 percent of the state's fatal motor vehicle accidents. That being said, state and local police don't always "play fair" where drunk driving is involved. Some of them are too subjective when interpreting field sobriety tests like the horizontal gaze nystagmus or the walk-and-turn. Others have inadvertently made improper arrests by using breathalyzer/intoxilyzer machines that haven't been correctly calibrated.
In jurisdictions around the country, police officers have allegedly padded their arrest records by exaggerating alcohol-related charges, arresting people who aren't actually impaired or pulling over vehicles without having a valid reason because they have found drunk drivers in the area in the past. In one egregious example of this behavior, a Utah state trooper may have trumped up DUI charges against as many as 1,500 people.
Even if these actions are taken with the public safety in mind, and not a self-serving purpose, they still violate the legal rights guaranteed to every American by the Constitution. That is why it is important to aggressively defend yourself against DUI charges - not only are the penalties for a conviction severe, it is possible that charges were not warranted in the first place. If you or a loved one is facing Delaware DUI charges, protect your rights by speaking with an experienced criminal defense attorney in your area to learn more about your legal rights and options.
Article provided by Law Offices of Francis E. Farren, Esq., P.A.
Visit us at www.farren-law.com---
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