Every state has laws making it illegal to drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Every state also has penalties for those who are caught drinking and driving. However, the state of Arizona has the distinction of being one of the strictest states regarding DUIs and DUI penalties. The purpose of these harsh laws and penalties is to attempt to prevent DUIs from occurring in the first place.
Arizona is #1
A recent study ranked Arizona as #1 in criminal penalties for those who are driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and #2 in DUI prevention efforts across the country. The theory is that the stricter the penalties, the greater the deterrent to committing DUIs to begin with. The Arizona laws regarding DUIs are harsh and the penalties are severe.
Arizona Legal Limit
Arizona has strict limits regarding the amount of alcohol consumption allowed when operating a vehicle. If your Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) is above .08% in the state of Arizona, you will receive a DUI. If you are a commercial driver with a CDL license, you can be arrested, charged, and convicted of a DUI if your BAC is above .04%. If you are under the age of 21, you can be charged with a DUI if you have any alcohol in your system at all. Reaching these legal limits will likely result in strict penalties.
DUI Penalties in Arizona
The reason Arizona is ranked number #1 for DUI penalties is that the penalties here are severe. Comparatively to other states, Arizona has longer jail times, stricter penalties, and more severe consequences for all DUI offenders.
- First Offense. 24 hours to 10 days of jail time, $250 fine, 90-360 days suspended license.
- Second Offense. 30-90 day jail sentence, $500 fine, one year suspended license.
- Extreme DUI. If you have a BAC of .15%, you will serve at least 30 days in jail and have to pay a minimum of $2,500.
- Ignition Interlock Device. All DUI convictions require the installation of an ignition interlock device.
- More than 2 DUIs. If someone has more than two DUIs, Arizona automatically regards it as a Class 4 felony, and an offender must serve a minimum of four months in prison.
There have been cases in Arizona in which a DUI offender was sentenced to 15 years in prison for a fatality involving a DUI. Manslaughter charges for DUIs involving the death of another person can lead to 21 years in prison.
Contact an Experienced DUI Attorney
If you were arrested and charged with a DUI in Arizona, you are likely facing some serious penalties. Contact Arja Shah, an experienced criminal defense lawyer in Phoenix, AZ who can review your arrest and charge for DUI. She can help you with your case and work to get you the least severe sentence possible. Contact Arja Shah by calling (602) 560-7408 or by sending a message through the firm’s request form today.