Most people in Virginia may be aware that a charge of driving while intoxicated is a criminal offense. A conviction, therefore, leaves a person with a criminal record. Certainly, nobody wants to have a criminal record on file but some people might too easily dismiss these charges as many drunk driving charges are misdemeanors so drivers might not consider them too serious. However, it is important to be aware that some DWI offenses can actually be felonies.
Many people in Virginia who are arrested and charged with impaired driving offenses might feel like they have no ability to defend themselves against the charges. They may even simply plead guilty to the charge and solemnly accept whatever penalties are imposed. However, it is important to remember that the right to pursue a defense, including all the way through to a trial, always exists. This is true for people accused of any type of criminal offense, including drunk driving.
When people decide to drink and drive, they are instantly endangering the lives of everyone around them. Unfortunately, while many victims of Virginia DUI accidents suffer immense loss, perpetrators are also left to suffer from the devasting outcome of their poor choice.
Young people drink in college for a variety of reasons. Alcohol is considered a rite of passage for those who are involved in sports, fraternities and sororities and making new friends. Many students enjoy the newfound adult freedoms of being on their own and going to bars and parties. Some students, especially those who are new to college life, might rely on alcohol to cope with the pressures of studying and stressful class schedules. You and other Virginia residents should understand the consequences that may result from drinking too much in college.
Virginia is not one of the nine states that has legalized the use of marijuana for recreational purposes but one of its neighbors, the District of Columbia, has done this. It therefore stands to reason that some people might legally use pot in Washington D.C. and later find themselves in Virginia. Alternatively people who live in Virginia may go into D.C. and legally smoke pot there. Either way, they should be aware of the growing push to find ways to arrest people for suspected impaired driving due to marijuana.
People who live in Virginia are quite likely used to hearing about increased enforcement against suspected drunk driving when holiday times come around. This is not without some cause as certainly many people attend events where alcohol is served and then drive home. First, it is important for people to remember that doing this is not illegal. However, it can start to make one feel like that is being treated as illegal when the crackdown is so severe.
People in Virginia who are arrested for driving under the influence offenses after supposedly failing one or more of the field sobriety tests used by officers should know that these tests are not 100-percent accurate. According to FieldSobrietyTests.org, the individual accuracy rates of these three tests ranges from a high of only 77 percent to a low of 65 percent.
Despite the fact that a strong public stereotype continues to exist about the type of people who are arrested for drunk driving, the fact of the matter is that many very responsible people find themselves in this situation in Virginia every year. From doctors to lawyers to teachers and more, an arrest or conviction for driving under the influence has happened to more people than many might think.
If you hold a commercial driving license in Virginia, you know that there are several responsibilities associated with this special type of operating license. In some cases, you are actually held to a higher standard than is someone who holds a standard personal driving license. One example is when it comes to impaired driving offenses.
Residents in Virginia who are arrested for and charged with drunk driving offenses will want to understand the particulars surrounding some of the penalties they may face if they are ultimately convicted of a driving under the influence charge. One of these penalties may be the required installation and use of an ignition interlock device, also commonly referred to as an IID.