What can I do if I was charged with a serious OUI or OUD offense in Massachusetts?
Answered by: J. W. Carney, Jr.J. W. Carney, Jr. and Associates Phone: 617-404-9683
Most people in Massachusetts know they can be charged for an OUI if the police catch them driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 or higher. Many also know that drivers under the age of 21 can face OUI charges if they drive with a BAC of just 0.02. However, there are circumstances under which these charges can become more serious.
If you face any of these aggravated charges, it is more important than ever that you do not address the charges on your own. You want to work with an experienced attorney who can review and challenge the evidence, protect your rights and guide you with confidence through each phase of your case.
What factors lead to aggravated OUI charges?
You could face aggravated OUI charges, or additional charges, for a variety of circumstances. These include:
- You were in an accident
- Someone was hurt
- A child under the age of 14 was in your car
- Your record indicates previous OUI convictions
Factors such as these can lead to steep penalties for a conviction. For instance, if you had a child under the age of 14 in your car at the time of your arrest, you could face child endangerment charges in addition to the OUI. These additional charges could mean you’d spend between 90 days and two-and-a-half years in prison. You could face fines between $1,000 and $5,000, and you might suffer additional harm to your reputation, career and personal life.
What should I expect from my OUI defense attorney?
The strategies and tactics of your OUI defense will depend upon the facts of the case, as well as your personal situation and goals. Even so, a good attorney will examine every aspect of the case, from the evidence to your personal history and any mitigating circumstances.
Some common approaches include:
- Examining the results of any sobriety or breathalyzer tests
- Challenging instances of officer misconduct
- Bringing in expert witnesses to counter flawed accounts of intoxication
- Highlighting any flaws in the report’s account of other circumstances
It is not uncommon for the prosecution’s case to fall apart under scrutiny, and a thorough review may lead to reduced charges. You might even see the charges dismissed altogether. No matter the outcome, the case is impacting your life. The more serious the charges, the more you want to make sure you do everything you can to minimize any damage to your career, relationships and life.
The answer is intended to be for informational purposes only. It should not be relied on as legal advice, nor construed as a form of attorney-client relationship.
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