Third DUI Charges in Prince William County
With multiple past convictions for driving under the influence, defendants need skillful legal advice when responding to third DUI charges in Prince William County. In the Commonwealth of Virginia, a third conviction can result in very harsh penalties, but those penalties can often be avoided or reduced by executing a smart and proactive legal strategy.
Speak with an experienced Prince William County DUI Lawyer to find out what options are available to you and to move forward with fighting charges to avoid jail and protect your driver’s license.
Facing Third DUI Charges in Prince William County
All DUI defendants should have legal representation, since prosecutors who press charges in third DUI cases pursue convictions aggressively, routinely seeking to serve defendants with the maximum penalties available. In these situations, defendants need a knowledgeable, local advocate who can help to determine whether police acted appropriately, whether evidence was collected illegally, and whether BAC testing was done properly.
Challenging a DUI charge is possible for many reasons, but without an understanding of Virginia statutes and local law enforcement practices, it is possible that procedural violations or problems with evidence that can be used to undermine the prosecutor’s case may be missed.
Being able to create doubt about a prosecutor’s case is all it takes to avoid a guilty verdict, and our experienced DUI attorneys spend their careers learning how to raise questions about the reliability of a prosecutor’s evidence.
The defense attorneys at our firm can also provide other services to clients facing serious third DUI charges, including negotiating plea agreements with prosecutors. While prosecutors may be reluctant to make deals with defendants on a third offense, a good attorney can often be persuasive in the negotiation of a plea agreement that mitigates the damage associated with the penalties you could face.
Consequences of a Third DUI Conviction
Defendants found guilty of a third DUI offense, as defined by Virginia Code Section 18.2-266, will face penalties that are significantly more severe than the consequences of a first or second offense. A third DUI becomes a Class 6 felony, while first and second offenses qualify as misdemeanors. If five or fewer years have passed since a second and third conviction, defendants can also face a mandatory minimum jail term of six months. Defendants can also be required to pay a $1,000 fine and will have their license to drive permanently revoked.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, a felony criminal record also results from the third DUI conviction, which can affect many employment, housing, and educational opportunities for defendants.
Discussing Your Options with a Lawyer
From the moment after your arrest for a third DUI in Prince William County, it becomes important to begin exploring options for responding to charges. From conducting an investigation, to determining how to plead, the decisions you make and the actions you take can affect the outcome of your case.
Contacting a qualified legal professional as early as possible can help you to make smart, informed choices about how best to fight a third conviction. Call our Northern Virginia law offices as soon as possible to get started on defending against your charges.