Driving with 0.08 Percent Blood Alcohol Causing Injury
Being charged with driving under the influence, or with a certain percentage of blood alcohol content, can have serious repercussions for your daily life, driving privileges, and possibly result in jail time. Learn what these charges mean and how you can defend yourself on this page.
Being Charged with 0.08 Percent Alcohol Content and Causing an Injury
In brief, California Vehicle Code 23152(b) makes it illegal for you to drive any motor vehicle with a blood-alcohol content of 0.08% or higher. You're automatically guilty of DUI if your blood has this concentration of alcohol regardless of your activities, attitude, or apparent faculties.
But if you drive while under the influence and cause an injury, you may be charged under California Vehicle Code 23153(b). The prosecution must first prove that:
- You were driving a vehicle
- Your blood-alcohol content was 0.08% or more by bodyweight
- You were driving with that alcohol level and committed an illegal act AND
- That illegal act resulted in the bodily harm of another person
In this context, committing an illegal act can be as simple as driving improperly or failing to follow rules of the road, such as observing the right-of-way.
Penalties for Driving with 0.08 Percent Alcohol Content and Causing an Injury
Because driving under the influence and causing a bodily injury is regarded as a serious crime, it can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony. Which you'll be charged with depends on the specifics of your case and whether it's your first or second DUI charge within a 10-year timeframe.
If charged as a misdemeanor, you can face penalties including:
- Between five days and one year in county jail
- Probation for between three and five years
- Between $390 and $5000 in fines
- A three, nine, 18, or 30-month court-approved alcohol education program
- A suspension of your California driver's license for between one and three years
- Possible restitution or damages
If you're charged with a felony, penalties can be much more severe and include:
- Up to two, three, or four years in California state prison
- Another 3 to 6-year prison sentence if a victim severs a severe or great bodily injury
- A “strike” on your record, which counts for California's Three Strikes Law
- Between $1000 and $5000 in fines
- DUI school for between 18 or 30 months
- Revocation of your driver's license for five years
Defenses for These Charges
There are multiple defenses that a California criminal defense attorney can use to your benefit.
Blood Alcohol Content Not Proved
Drug test results are often inconsistent and unreliable. A skilled California criminal defense attorney can point this out and help the court see that your blood-alcohol content may not have actually been 0.08% or greater.
The Accident Wasn't Your Fault
Furthermore, an accident or bodily injury to another person may not have occurred due to your driving. A jaywalker illegally crossing the street, for instance, may have been the cause an accident even if someone in a car was under the influence of alcohol.
Contact a California Criminal Defense Attorney Today
Whatever the specifics of your case, it's critical that you contact the law offices of Peter James Chambers. Our expertise and legal knowledge can help you avoid a conviction and keep your driver's license. Contact us today for a free consultation.