Motorists in Virginia accused of drunk driving can face serious consequences and harsh penalties. This is especially certain if the accused has a prior DWI on their record or is accused of drunk driving while on federal property. As such, it is imperative that motorists take the matter seriously no matter the situation or evidence used against them. Creating a legal defense not only protects your rights but helps with the reduction and dismissal of the charges against you.
State and federal DWI
At Schmergel & Mersberger, PLC, our law firm understands the complexities a DWI can bring to a motorist in Virginia and the surrounding areas. As such, our attorneys are experienced in advocating for motorist rights when faced with a state or federal DWI.
When a motorist is suspected of drunk driving on a military base, in a national park or on a federal highway, the DWI becomes a federal offense. As such, the matter is handled in the United States District Court for Eastern District of Virginia. Our law firm has experience handling DWI in this and other venues.
Penalties and defense options
While a DWI is a traffic offense, it is not like a speeding ticket. The penalties can be harsh, increasing in severity with each subsequent charge. Often, the first conviction will result in a fine and a driver’s license suspension for one year. In contrast, a second conviction often means higher fines, longer suspension time, mandatory jail time and even treatment requirements.
In order to create the best defense, the details of your matter need to be known and understood. That means investigating the stop and whether it was a legal stop, assessing all the tests conducted during the stop and whether there was a lawful arrest. This information can assist with a defense strategy to help reduce or dismiss the charges.
No matter your situation, evidence used against you or criminal record, asserting a defense against a DWI is always possible. It can be an overwhelming time, which is understandable because a lot can be on the line. As such, a legal professional can help you navigate your defense options and help you protect your rights.