How Long Will You Be In Jail For Killing Someone While Driving Drunk?
Getting behind the wheel after drinking can lead to serious consequences for you and other traffic participants. The consequences may include penalties like jail time, fines, and insurance increases. In some cases, you could be charged with causing a fatal accident. Whether you are facing charges of DUI or vehicular manslaughter, you need an experienced attorney. The law for these types of crimes varies from state to state.
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Some states have more strict DUI penalties for vehicular homicide than others. In addition, some jurisdictions have additional charges for BAC levels that are higher than those required for a conviction of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. For example, a driver who had a BAC of less than 0.08 could be charged with vehicular manslaughter, while a driver who had a BAC between 0.08 and 0.08 could be charged with intoxication manslaughter.
While determining the specific criminal charge is important, you also need to understand how long you will be in jail and how your license will be affected. Most drivers who have been convicted of a DUI will serve a minimum of ten years in prison. If the defendant is convicted of a DUI manslaughter offense, the felony sentence will typically be four (4) years. However, judges have the discretion to decide the length of the felony term, and it is possible to receive a lesser penalty.
If you are convicted of DUI manslaughter or murder, you will be facing a felony charge and will have to spend a significant amount of time in jail. In addition, you will have a criminal record that can be used for employment, housing, and other legal purposes. You will also have to pay restitution to the family of the deceased. This restitution will help offset the financial loss the victim’s family suffered.
Depending on the state, you can be charged with intoxication manslaughter, vehicular manslaughter, or second-degree murder. In addition, if the drunk driver caused a fatal accident, the charges are enhanced. In some cases, a DUI manslaughter charge is punishable by a maximum of twenty (20) years in prison. If the intoxicated motorist was reading a text on a cell phone, then the prosecutor can also charge the driver with intoxication manslaughter.
If a DUI offender has a prior conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, then the prosecution can charge the offender with a felony, which is called “Watson murder”. If a person is killed in a crash involving a DUI offender, the offender can be sentenced to a minimum of fifteen (15) years in prison. Alternatively, if one or more people are injured, the defendant can be sentenced to an additional three (3) to six (6) years in prison.
In addition, if you are charged with a homicide, you can also be charged with a felony. In many states, you will have to pay restitution for the death of the victim, which can be large amounts of money. If the victim’s family is successful in a civil lawsuit, they can seek compensatory damages and punitive damages.