In Mississippi, if you are caught driving with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or more, you are considered to be driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while intoxicated (DWI). You can also be arrested for driving under the influence of drugs. A drunk driving conviction will result in significant fines and suspension of your driver’s license, and you could be sentenced to jail time. A DUI conviction stays on your driving record forever. If you are arrested again at a later date, you face even greater penalties.
Failure to take a test results in loss of license unless a court finds there was no basis to require you to take it.
Potential DUI Defenses
Don’t assume that because you were pulled over and failed the field sobriety test, or blew a .08 on the breathalyzer, that you don’t have a defense. There are a number of issues that an experienced DUI defense lawyer will investigate to determine whether you might have a solid defense.
An Attorney With Understanding and Compassion
I don’t judge my clients charged with DUI. I warn people not to drink and drive. People from all walks of life have been charged with drunk driving. Even some of the most upstanding community members can make mistakes.
Consequences of a Drunk Driving Conviction in Mississippi
When you are charged with DUI in Mississippi, the severity of the sentence depends on how many times you have been convicted of the crime:
- First-Offense DUI/DWI: some jail time, up to $1,000 in fines and license suspension of up to one year
- Second-Offense DUI: A minimum of $600 and a maximum of $1,500 in fines, some jail time, and license suspension of up to two years
- Third-Offense DUI/DWI (a felony DUI): Up to $5,000 in fines, some jail time, and a two-year license suspension
If you are a minor or have a commercial driver’s license (CDL), the blood alcohol level is lower and the consequences more severe.
DUI and Drug Use
Driving under the influence of drugs is taken very seriously by law enforcement and prosecutors in Mississippi. If you are facing charges for this, it is crucial to have an experienced attorney protecting your interests.
Defending You Against the Harsh Consequences of Drug DUI
If convicted of a drug-related DUI, you could be facing the suspension or revocation of your license, depending on the circumstances and your prior record.
DUI and Commercial Licenses
If you drive a commercial vehicle for a living, a DUI can harm your ability to provide for your family and continue in your career field. If you have been arrested for DUI, you are facing a one-year suspension of your commercial driver’s license (CDL) and the possibility of revocation if you are convicted of subsequent offenses.
Commercial License Suspension Lawyer
In Mississippi, the legal blood alcohol content limit is .04 for commercial drivers. If you have been arrested for DUI, I will work to protect your rights and obtain the best possible outcome which, in most cases, is working with the prosecutor or district attorney to reduce charges to a non-alcohol-related charge.
There is a school of thought that it is best to refuse to take a breath test when pulled over on suspicion of DUI. This is not true. In fact, refusing to submit to a breath test can result in a number of complications to your case, exposing you to severe consequences such as a suspension of your driver’s license, fines, jail time, and increased insurance premiums.
In DUI defense cases, one of the most critical factors is the evidence obtained through the use of breath tests. In recent years, law enforcement authorities have become more reliant on breathalyzer tests to establish guilt in these matters.
The Purpose of Breathalyzer Tests
The object of breathalyzer tests is to determine the blood-alcohol content of the suspected drunk driver. This can be done through an analysis of the vapor using a wet chemical method or by using infrared spectroscopic analysis.
Common Breathalyzer Testing Equipment
There are a number of common breath analysis machines in use today throughout the country, including the Intoxilyzer 5000, Intoxilyzer 4011 and the BAC Datamaster. Some localities still use more dated equipment such as the Breathalyzer 900 or Breathalyzer 990A.
Routine maintenance is required to maintain reliable performance of breath analysis machines. Failure to maintain them can result in inaccurate results. Serious questions have been and continue to be raised in the courts as to just how reliable these machines are and whether they should be considered valid evidence in DUI cases.
If you are facing drug charges, you have an uphill battle ahead. The entire criminal law system is geared towards punishing you for the crime, and the community will judge you harshly even before the trial has begun. You need a lawyer who will not pass moral judgment on you—someone who will fight for your drug crime defense to the very end.
Types of Drug Charges in Mississippi
Through personal family experience, I am familiar with the devastation that drug and alcohol abuse causes to a person and family. I have the experience and tenacity to defend you from many different types of drug charges, including:
- Drug selling
- Drug possession (illegal)
- Drug possession with intent to deliver
- Drug growing and cultivation
- Drug trafficking
I know how you and your family feel. If appropriate, we make every effort to refer you for treatment. In some circumstances an individual might be referred to drug court. These charges may involve prison time. Serious cases may tried in federal district court.