Underage DUI Lawyers in Colorado Springs
Helping You Defend Against Baby DUI Charges
In the United States, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is illegal, no matter how old you are. In Colorado, the state’s zero-tolerance law means that if you are under the drinking age of 21 and are pulled over for drunk driving, you could face severe consequences. Fines, community service, a license suspension, and even jail time are real possibilities if you are convicted of an underage DUI. The best thing you can do to protect yourself and your future when facing criminal charges is to hire an experienced underage DUI lawyer to defend you in court.
At Joyner Law, our team has years of experience representing underage drivers facing DUI charges. We will review your case and develop a legal strategy to reduce the charges you may be facing for underage drinking and driving. Please don’t feel like you must face these severe penalties on your own. Call our law office today at 719-294-0566 for a free initial consultation.
What is an Underage DUI?
An underage DUI, also called a baby DUI, is a specific DUI charge that only applies to drivers under the legal drinking age. In Colorado, anyone under 21 years old who is caught driving with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of above .02 can be charged.
Below are the possible charges you may face for underage drinking and driving:
- Underage drinking and driving: BAC of .02 to .05
- Driving while ability impaired (DWAI): BAC of .05 to .08
- Driving under the influence (DUI): BAC of .08 or higher
Because Colorado has a zero-tolerance law, even your first offense can have severe consequences. Underage drinking and driving is a class A traffic infraction, and some DUI charges can even be classified as felonies. Colorado is especially hard on those facing DUI charges in an effort to discourage drivers from getting behind the wheel while impaired.
What Are the Potential Penalties of an Underage DUI?
The penalties for underage drinking and driving increase with each subsequent offense you are charged with. Below are the potential penalties for impaired driving while under the age of 21:
- First offense: Up to $100 in fines and up to 24 hours of community service, plus 4 DMV points and a three-month license suspension. You may also be required to take a drug and alcohol treatment program at your own expense.
- Second offense: Up to 90 days in jail, $300 in fines, and 24 hours of community service, plus 4 DMV points and a six-month license suspension. You may also be required to take a drug and alcohol treatment education class.
- Third and subsequent offenses: Up to 90 days in jail, $300 in fines, and 24 hours of community service, plus 4 DMV points and a one-year license suspension. You will also be required to complete a drug and alcohol treatment program.
If your license is suspended after your first offense, you may be able to apply for a probationary license after one month. This license allows you to drive a motor vehicle to and from work and school for a two-month period.
The penalties above are just for an underage drinking and driving charge or a charge with a BAC of .02 to .05. If you are charged with a DWAI or a DUI, you could face further penalties, including a jail sentence, hefty fines, and getting your license revoked. DUI and DWAI penalties also increase with every subsequent offense.
Can I Fight a License Revocation?
If you are charged with underage drinking and driving, you can request a DMV hearing to contest having your license revoked. At the DMV hearing, you can bring an underage DUI attorney to represent you and plead your case. You must win both the DMV hearing and the criminal case against you to get your license reinstated. Even if you win the criminal case, you could still get your license revoked if you lose the DMV hearing.
In criminal cases, prosecutors must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. In DMV hearings, however, the burden of proof is much lower. Because of this, it’s essential to have an experienced DUI lawyer on your side to represent you and help you through the process. DMV hearings can also serve as valuable practice runs for the eventual criminal case you may have to attend.
What Are the Most Common Defenses Against an Underage DUI?
When facing charges of underage drinking and driving or an underage DUI, there are a few ways you can fight the charges to potentially reduce the penalties you are facing. Your specific legal strategy will depend on your unique circumstances, but there are some common defense strategies that our team uses often.
To prevent an underage DUI conviction, our team may use the following defenses:
Lack of Probable Cause
Before a police officer pulls someone over, they must reasonably suspect that a crime is occurring. Officers will look for signs like swerving, excessive braking, speeding, and other reckless driving activities. If you were not driving erratically or dangerously, our team could argue that there was no probable cause to pull you over.
Faulty Breathalyzer Test
After you are pulled over on suspicion of DUI or DWAI, officers will likely administer a breath test via a breathalyzer. This machine measures the blood alcohol concentration in your body. However, if the test was not given correctly or the device malfunctioned, our lawyers can argue that the evidence cannot be used against you.
Some medical conditions can mimic the signs of being intoxicated, even up to the point of showing a blood alcohol content that is above the legal limit. If you have any medical conditions that may cause a skewed breathalyzer or blood test, our team can present this evidence to the court in your defense.
Should I Hire a DUI Lawyer?
Whether it’s your very first offense or you’re facing multiple traffic infractions, the consequences of an underage DUI can impact your life in severe ways. Many young people have had their lives disrupted over one single mistake, making it difficult for them to apply for jobs or get into college later on in life. A criminal record can also make securing housing or applying for government benefits difficult. At Joyner Law, we believe that every client deserves a quality defense strategy to help them reduce or even remove the penalties they may be facing.
Our team will work tirelessly to gather evidence on your behalf, including photos, videos, and witness statements. We will review your case and develop a unique legal strategy that’s right for you. Don’t leave the fate of your future in someone else’s hands. Contact our office today for a free initial consultation from a compassionate, experienced underage DUI lawyer by calling 719-294-0566.