If you are like most Minnesota residents, you have heard people talk about just how severe the penalties for a drunk driving conviction in Minnnesota can be. But, do you really know what the law says can happen and when you might be able to be charged with a driving while intoxicated offense? This is an important thing for any driver in the state to know.
The short answer is not completely.
People in Minnesota who have been arrested and charged with drunk driving offenses have good reason to be concerned. The potential penalties they may face if ultimately convicted of drunk driving can range from time in jail to high fines and more. However, once those elements of a drunk driving conviction are over, problems could still be experienced. This is because a DUI is a criminal offense, not just a traffic offense like a typical speeding ticket.
If you are like most North Dakota drivers who are arrested on suspicion of driving while impaired or intoxicated by alcohol, you are likely to have a lot of questions. What is going to happen to me? Will I need to pay a fine? Will I need to spend time in jail? Will I lose my driving privileges? These are just some of the things you will need to learn about.
Minnesota law is tough on drunk driving. As explained by the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, penalties for even a first offense may include loss of driving privileges, fines and jail time. Some people may be able to reinstate their ability to drive but may be required to have an ignition interlock device installed in order to do so. An IID basically locks a vehicle's ignition. The only way a driver can unlock the ignition is to take and pass a breath test first.
Minnesota residents who hear stories about drunk drivers can easily feel nervous if they themselves are ever stopped and eventually arrested for impaired driving. The stereotype that is created in people's minds about who gets DUIs is very negative. The truth is that many very responsible people can find themselves facing such a charge if they drive after drinking.
Minnesota has very strict laws when it concerns drinking and driving. For drivers of commercial vehicles, they can be arrested and charged with a crime if their blood alcohol content level is .04 or higher. For other drivers over the age of 21, the limit is .08. The state also has an implied consent law, which means that people agree to submit to a chemical test if they are stopped for a DUI.
If you have diabetes, and you are pulled over in Grand Forks and charged with drunk driving, you may be able to prove that your field sobriety test or breath test was influenced by your health condition. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, it depends on which test you were administered and the type of diabetic condition you were suffering from at the time.
The highest court in the nation recently cast doubt on the constitutionality of North Dakota's tough DUI laws. Last Wednesday, the justices of the Supreme Court spent more than an hour debating the legality of warrantless breath tests. What can we learn from their deliberations, and what could it mean for you if you are pulled over?
Now that the holiday season is over, most Minnesotans are settling into the slower pace that January brings. Unfortunately, thousands of Minnesotans are currently facing the grim reality of criminal charges related to holiday overindulgence.