Looking in your rearview mirror and seeing the flashing lights of a patrol car is never a welcome sight for a motorist. Seeing those lights and then realizing you had a couple glasses of wine or a beer with your dinner less than an hour ago makes them downright terrifying. While some arrests for driving under the influence are for true “drunk drivers”, many are for average people who made the mistake of having a drink or two and then getting behind the wheel and driving home. If you fall into the latter category, and now find yourself facing charges for driving under the influence, or DUI, in Nebraska you should know the basic DUI penalties in Nebraska.
There are a number of factors that go into determining what offense you are charged with, and therefore what penalties you face, for an alcohol related driving offense. First, the presence, or absence, of a previous DUI conviction is important. Second, the degree to which you were intoxicated, or the amount of alcohol in your system, is also important. Nebraska law divides DUI offenses into “aggravated” and “non-aggravated” offenses. If your blood alcohol level, or BAC, was over 0.08 percent but under 0.15 percent you would have been charged with non-aggravated DUI. A BAC level of 0.15 percent or above, however, will result in charges for aggravated DUI. Finally, if you were involved in an accident wherein someone was injured, that will also play an important role in determining the potential penalties you face.
If you have no previous convictions for DUI, did not injure anyone, and did not have a BAC level of 0.15 percent or above you were likely charged with first-time DUI in Nebraska, a class W misdemeanor. The judicial penalties you face will include, but not be limited to:
- Minimum of 7 days in jail
- Maximum of 60 days in jail
- $500 fine
- 6 month license suspension
- Possibly required to install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle
If you had a BAC level of 0.15 percent or higher at the time of your arrest you are likely facing charges for first-time aggravated DUI, also a class W misdemeanor however, the potential penalties are more serious, such as:
- Minimum jail time of 7 days
- Maximum jail time 60 days
- Fine of $500
- One year license suspension
- Alcohol assessment and treatment if deemed necessary
- Ignition interlock device installed on your vehicle
Not surprisingly, with each successive DUI conviction the potential penalties you face increase. As an example, the penalties you face for a second time non-aggravated DUI include:
- Minimum jail time 30 days
- Maximum jail time 90 days
- Fine of $500
- Eighteen month license revocation
- Probation along with an ignition interlock device on your vehicle
Because of the complexity of the DUI laws, and the individual nature of any criminal prosecution, it is in your best interest to consult with an experienced Nebraska DUI attorney as soon as possible after being charged with DUI. Contact the Petersen Law Office 24 hours a day at 402-513-2180 to discuss your case with an experienced DUI defense attorney.