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Third DUI in San Diego

If you are facing a DUI charge for the third time, you run the risk of increased penalties. A private attorney at San Diego DUI Attorney, can walk you through the steps of this process as well as determine the most effective defense strategy to ensure a positive outcome.

Under California Vehicle Code (CVC) 23152, you will be subject to increased penalties if you have been convicted of two other offenses relating to either reckless driving or DUI within the past 10 years.

Third DUI: Penalties under California law

Penalties associated with a third DUI charge include, but are not limited to:

  • Up to 1 year in jail.
  • In the case of an individual who refuses to submit to chemical blood alcohol testing at the time of arrest, an additional 10 days of jail time will be added (CVC 23577).
  • Fines of between $390 and $1,000.
  • Revocation of a driver’s license for 3 years (CVC Section 13352).
  • To successfully reinstate a driver’s license, an individual must demonstrate financial responsibility and the successful completion of a DUI education program.
  • In some cases, an individual may apply for a license with driving restrictions.
  • The designation of a “habitual traffic offender” for 3 years.
  • A mandatory interlocking ignition device installed in the defendant’s vehicle for two years following the completion of the license suspension or revocation.

Additional penalties may include, but are not limited to:

  • 30 additional days of jail time if there was a passenger in the car who was under 14 years of age (CVC Section 23572).
  • Increased sentencing and/or probation penalties if the defendant’s blood alcohol concentration was 0.15% or higher, or they refused the test (CVC Section 23578).
  • 60 extra days in jail if the defendant was speeding at the time of the arrest (CVC Section 23152).
  • Vehicle may be impounded (CVC Sections 23592 and 23594).
  • Possible revocation of the defendant’s driver’s license for 10 years (CVC Section 23597).
  • Probation may be assigned under certain conditions (CVC Section 23548).

Further DUI charges are subject to even greater penalties (CVC Section 23550).

There are also aggravating factor that can increase your penalties. Some of these are:

  • Driving excessive speeds
  • Causing an accident and harming another individual, other than yourself
  • Being under 21 years of age
  • Child Endangerment (Penal Code 273a). This is when you have a child under the age of 14 in your vehicle.
  • Refusal to take a chemical test
  • Your blood alcohol content (BAC) being 0.15% of higher

If you have any of these aggravating factors the courts will also look at your criminal history, specifically prior DUIs, and the specific circumstances of your third DUI arrest. Having a skilled attorney can be extremely helpful if you have aggravating factors because you are much more likely to be sentenced to jail time. 

License Suspension after a Third DUI

If you received a third DUI in California you are facing a much longer license suspension than with the first and second. 

If you are convicted in court or if you lose your DMV hearing you will receive a court triggered 3 year license suspension. This is court triggered if your 2 prior DUIs were in the last 10 years. 

However, the APS will only issue a 1-year suspension if your 2 prior DUIs were within the last 10 years. 

You can also install an IID (Ignition Interlock Device) and show proof of installation and obtain a restricted license. Installation of the IID is only an option after 180 days if you submitted to a chemical test. The IID device will allow you to drive anywhere with the device installed for 1 year. 

If you did not submit to a chemical test you may receive much tougher punishments from the court and DMV. You may loose your license for 3 years and not receive a restricted license during those 3 years. 

Should you get a restricted license, the DMV will show o n record that you have a court-triggered suspension.

Third DUI: Defenses

Although a third DUI charge brings about increased penalties, a skilled and experienced private attorney can build a strong defense on your behalf. The following demonstrate some of the possible defenses your private attorney may decide to utilize:

  • There was a lack of probable cause for the initial traffic stop.
  • Proper Miranda rights procedures were violated.
  • The validity of the arrest may be brought into question.
  • Procedures involving testing equipment were mishandled or improper.

The penalties and punishments for a third time DUI in California will vary depending on the circumstances of your case. 

If you are convicted of a third time DUI in California, you may be able to have it erased from your permanent record by getting an expungement. This is only an option after you have successfully completed probation. If you have successfully completed probation, our attorneys can file a petition with the court for a DUI expungement. A judge will review your petition and possibly grant the expungement. If you are granted a DUI expungement, you can withdraw your plea of no contest or guilty and enter a new plea of not guilty. Once the not guilty pea is entered, your case can be dismissed. 

Related Offenses

Reckless Driving (as a substitute charge): In some cases, an offender may be charged with reckless driving (CVC Sections 23103-23105) instead of being charged with a DUI. This charge often carries lesser penalties than a DUI charge.

Public Offense: This term applies when an offender has been convicted of a DUI (CVC Sections 23152 or 23153) and the offense occurred within 10 years of other certain offenses, such as a felony DUI. Further penalties are associated with a public offense.

Causing Bodily Injury to Another Person: Under CVC Section 23153, it is illegal to drive while under the influence of alcohol and concurrently act in a way that “…causes bodily injury to any person other than the driver.” This increases penalties associated with a DUI charge.

A San Diego DUI attorney can help

When faced with a DUI for the third time, it’s crucial to avoid a felony conviction. An experienced San Diego criminal defense attorney, with expert knowledge of DUI cases, will help you navigate the legal system and ensure the best possible outcome.

An experienced DUI attorney can collect evidence and create a defense for your case. This could involve getting discovery for your case and/or subpoenaing witnesses that will support you.  A skilled attorney can gather evidence to weaken the states case against you. 

Our attorneys can also help you negotiate a deal with the DA (district attorney). Some of the negotiations could involve reducing your case to a wet or dry reckless which hold much lighter consequences. We have helped thousand of people bargain their cases to lesser charges.

San Diego DUI Attorney specializes in DUI and criminal defense law, serving clients in San Diego, Vista, El Cajon, Oceanside, Chula Vista, Orange County and other San Diego County communities.

Contact our office today at 619-535-7150 for a FREE DUI consultation.

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