Driving under the influence of intoxicants is always a serious crime, but certain factors can lead to a felony charge. Felonies are never something the accused should take lightly. Because a felony arrest will follow a person for the rest of their life, they need to contact a defense lawyer right away. With experienced legal help, a person can achieve the best outcome possible for their particular felony DUII charges.
In Oregon, a person can be charged with a felony if they have at least three DUI or DUII charges in the past 10 years. For instance, if a defendant has a charge of operating a boat while intoxicated in 2007 and a DUII charge for operating a motor vehicle in 2011, if they receive a third arrest in 2015, they will be charged with a Class C felony. These charges carry a maximum of 5 years in prison and/or a maximum fine of $125,000. This can have a life-changing impact on a person.
It should be noted that a person does not need to have been charged in Oregon to for these past convictions to come into play. For example, if the person above received their 2011 DUII in Washington, that would still count under the Oregon statute. In the past, DUII scofflaws would move from state to state to avoid prosecution. Now, a person carries previous convictions from any state into Oregon.
There are certain defenses to DUII charges that may be applicable to your particular case. For instance, if a police stop was invalid or illegal, it may lead to the charges being dropped entirely. Or a police force may have improperly handled evidence that tainted a particular sample. If any of these problems have occurred in your case, a defense lawyer will find the problems and use them to your advantage. This way, you can be sure your liberty is being fully protected.
At Kroll & Johnson, we have helped many clients charged with felony DUII in Portland and across Oregon. We understand how serious these charges are and will do everything possible to achieve the best results possible for our clients. For a free consultation to discuss your drunk driving arrest, contact Kroll & Johnson right away.