In California, a felony DUI is considered a more serious offense than a misdemeanor charge for driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs. It is much more difficult to get a felony DUI expunged from your criminal record even after you have fulfilled the penalty terms of your conviction, and unlike a misdemeanor DUI conviction, a conviction for a felony DUI usually is accompanied by mandatory time in state prison (rather than time in jail). Other penalties, fines, period of license revocation, etc., are usually more severe.
In San Diego County, the Law Offices of David M. Boertje can conduct an independent investigation of the criminal charges filed against you. There may be evidence that can get the charges against you reduced or dropped. For example, there are certain DUI cases known as “wobblers” that can be charged as a felony or a misdemeanor. One of our experienced San Diego DUI lawyers can provide you with the defense you need to obtain the best outcome for your case.Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol or Drugs Causing Injury
In California, under California Vehicle Code Section 23153, it is against the law to engage in an illegal act while you are driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (with a BAC of .08% or more or .04% or more for commercial drivers) that causes bodily injury to another person. In order for a jury to find you guilty of “DUI causing injury,” the prosecution must prove that your negligent or careless actions while driving under the influence were the proximate cause of injury.
A felony conviction for driving under the influence with injury can lead to up to three years in state prison, with another year for every victim. If anyone was seriously injured, a “great bodily injury” enhancement may apply that could increase time in prison by another three years. This felony DUI would also count as a strike under the state’s Three Strikes law.Vehicular Manslaughter While Intoxicated
In order to be found guilty of this offense, the prosecution must prove that the driver was driving above the legal BAC limit and committed a traffic offense that caused another person’s death. The amount of time that a person convicted of this offense may be ordered to spend in prison increases with each person killed.Gross Vehicular Manslaughter While Intoxicated
A driver can be charged with this offense if it appears that he or she engaged in a grossly negligent act that led to another person’s death while driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.Other DUI Offenses That can be Charged as Felonies
- Hit and Run Causing Death or Injury
- Second Degree Murder
- A Fourth or Subsequent DUI Conviction in 10-Years
- A DUI Conviction After a Prior Felony Conviction
For information about these and other California DUI offenses, visit the DUI Hit and Run, DUI Enhancements, and Vehicular Homicide pages on our Web site.
In Carlsbad, San Diego, and the other cities of San Diego County, your best chance of fighting the felony DUI charges against you is to hire an experienced San Diego DUI lawyer that is on your side. To request your free consultation, call the Law Offices of David M. Boertje or you can send us an e-mail or contact us online.