Colorado Driving Offenses For Alcohol Or Drugs

In Colorado, driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .05 or higher is illegal and can result in jail time and suspension of your driver's license, even for the first offense. DUI, DUI-D, DUI per se and DWAI all describe the charge where a driver is suspected of driving over the legal limit of alcohol, drugs or both.

Driving under the Influence of Drugs, (DUI-D) is a crime regardless of whether the drug is legal or prescribed. DUI-D is treated similarly to the penalties for alcohol.

If you are stopped by a police officer, you can be arrested for DUI (driving under the influence). First, the officer needs to establish "reasonable suspicion" to stop your vehicle. Next, the officer will need to determine whether or not you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Colorado driver's license law requires that if the officer has "probable cause" to believe that you are under the influence, you must submit to a blood or breath test. Failure to do so could result in a one year suspension of your license from the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). A DUI charge and conviction can have dramatic effects on your future.

How My Boulder Law Firm Can Help

I use 16 years of experience as both a prosecutor and defense attorney to analyze the facts surrounding your DUI charge and will question the allegations against you. I am prepared to challenge any facet of your case where law enforcement or the government has not abided by the laws and procedures you are guaranteed. My goal is always to obtain the best possible outcome for you.

Consequences for driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs can be significant, even on a first offense. This can include:

  • Thousands of dollars in court costs
  • Fines
  • Supervision fees
  • Extensive community service
  • Monitored sobriety
  • Jail

Repeat Offenders Face Even Harsher Penalties

If you have had prior alcohol or drug related driving convictions or if you have an excessive blood alcohol level (greater than .200), the penalties get much worse. Jail is mandatory in these type of cases.

If you have had three or more prior alcohol or drug related driving convictions, you can now be charged with a felony. A DUI/DWAI offense is considered a misdemeanor charge and can result in jail time, license suspension, and points on your driving record, fines, counseling and probation. However, in the spring of 2015 the legislature changed the laws to make a fourth time DUI/DWAI a felony, carrying with it a possible penalty of six years in prison followed by three years of mandatory parole.

Driver's License Implications

The implications of a drunk driving arrest aren't just limited to criminal charges. The Department of Motor Vehicles may take administrative action against your driver's license, including restricting, suspending or revoking your license.

I have extensive experience with Department of Motor Vehicles hearings. As an experienced attorney, I know that protecting your license can be a critical part of your defense strategy.

Under Colorado law, if you get pulled over and blow more than .08, you have only seven days to request a hearing with the DMV. If you don't, your driver's license will be revoked on the eighth day. That's why it is critical to take quick action after a drunk driving arrest.

Take Action Now

Take action to protect your rights and your driver's license after a DUI arrest. Contact my Boulder law firm for a free and confidential consultation.