For those arrested for driving while intoxicated (DWI) in New Hampshire, the possible penalties can have devastating effects on both personal and professional life. Prosecution against those charged with such crimes will show little to no leniency, with little regard to the circumstances of the arrest or the effects the penalties may have not only on the defendant, but also his or her loved ones. However, with a defense lawyer on your side who has experience negotiating with prosecutors and judges, the chances for a positive outcome are in your favor.
At The Anzalone Law Firm, our drunk driving lawyers understand the serious nature of convictions for DWI and the major repercussions that penalties may cause. Our legal team believes that every person deserves competent legal representation in court and the chance for their side of the story to be heard.Police DWI Procedure
A DWI arrest will commonly happen for one of two reasons; either a patrol officer will pull over a driver for a traffic violation or suspicious driving behavior, or a drunk driving checkpoint will conclude that a driver is possibly under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Once the officer believes that the subject may be drunk, he or she will perform field sobriety tests, which will "test" the subject's coordination and involuntary reactions. Finally, a blood alcohol content (BAC) test may be administered via breath test to determine whether he or she is over the legal BAC level of 0.08 percent. If results show a high BAC, an individual will be taken to the police station for a final BAC test and most likely charged with drunk driving.Penalties and Restriction under New Hampshire Law
Under New Hampshire law, the possible penalties for driving while intoxicated are dependent upon the amount of DWI convictions a defendant has on his or her record within the past 10 years. A first time conviction can be punished by license suspension ranging from 90 days to two years, a maximum $1,000 fine, enrollment in an impaired driver intervention program, and possibly alcohol or drug treatment and counseling.
Upon a second conviction within two years, a minimum 30 day jail sentence is imposed, or a 10 day sentence if more than two years but less than 10. Additionally, fines are increased, license suspension is for a minimum of three years, and installation of an ignition interlock device is possible.
Finally, a third conviction is subject to a minimum of 180 days in jail, an indefinite license suspension that can be petitioned after seven years, ignition interlock device installation, enrollment in a residential treatment program, and fines.
Additionally, refusing to take a BAC test is an offense under the state's implied consent law, which all licensed drivers are under in New Hampshire. A first offense is punishable by a 180 day license suspension, and second by two years, and a third also by two years, in addition to all other penalties.What is an Aggravated DWI?
Under New Hampshire law, drunk driving that is committed under certain circumstances can be classified as "aggravated DWI." This will be subjected to longer jail time, increased fines, and a longer license suspension, should any of these factors be present during the crime:
- Causing an accident that results in serious injury;
- Attempting to elude law enforcement;
- Having a BAC of 0.16 or greater;
- Driving 30 miles per hour over the speed limit; and/or
- Having a passenger younger than 16 years old in the vehicle.
If you or a loved one is facing charges for driving while intoxicated, the NH defense lawyers at The Anzalone Law Firm can provide you with the skilled and personal legal representation needed to reach a favorable case result. Through effective defense strategies, you can avoid the unnecessary penalties that will harm many aspects of your personal life and career. For more information on how we can apply the skills and experience gained from years of success in the courtroom to your case, contact us today at 603.548.3797.
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