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If you are facing a DUI charge, you should know which types of penalties you may be facing and how they could affect your life. Although DUIs are common, they can have damaging consequences for your personal life and professional livelihood. As a result, we understand how important it is for you to seek guidance from an experienced Cleveland DUI lawyer. A. Dale Naticchia serves clients in Cleveland, Akron, and other areas of Cuyahoga County. We are ready to answer any questions that you may have about the legal process and how we may be able to help you. Some penalties involve jail time and fines, but you may also be required to complete a drug and alcohol treatment program as part of your sentence. Call us today to learn more about this type of program.Drug and Alcohol Treatment Program Options in Ohio DUI Cases
Although driving while intoxicated is popularly known as DUI, Ohio law actually defines it as operating a vehicle while intoxicated, or OVI. Having a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08% or more, or simply driving while impaired by alcohol, can lead to charges. This is also true of situations in which a driver has drugs in their system that impair their ability to operate a motor vehicle, or if they have a per se illegal level of drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, heroin, or amphetamines in their system.
If you are facing an OVI charge, the penalties depend on whether this is your first charge or a subsequent charge. The penalties get more severe as additional convictions start to add up. There is also an administrative license suspension that you may receive from the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles, which means that you may be barred from driving for a very long time.
Ohio maintains a drug and alcohol treatment program called The DUI Program, which is a 72-hour intervention course designed to assist attendees with learning about making better decisions, the dangers of drinking and driving, and how to avoid additional charges. It includes group therapy, alcohol and drug education classes, and individual assessments. A first-time offender is usually required to participate in this program, along with someone who receives a reduced DUI charge, such as reckless operation of a motor vehicle. This is on top of the monetary fee that you are required to pay and any jail time that the judge includes in your sentence. If your BAC was between 0.08 and 0.17, the judge has the option of sentencing you to either three days in jail or The DUI Program. If your BAC exceeded 0.17, or if you refused to take a breathalyzer test within the last 20 years, and a DUI conviction resulted, you may be required to spend three days in jail as well as completing the program. The judge may also sentence you to six days in jail instead of the program and jail time combined. Some people prefer to attend a drug and alcohol treatment program in lieu of going to jail, and a knowledgeable and experienced DUI defense lawyer can advocate for this option on your behalf.
Although you may think that your situation is hopeless, it is always important to understand your legal rights and to ensure that you are being treated fairly and with the respect that you deserve. We have seen how stressful this situation can be firsthand, which is why we work diligently to identify any defenses that may apply in your case and to pursue the most appropriate sentencing options if a conviction proves inevitable.Speak With a Knowledgeable DUI Defense Lawyer in Cleveland
Whether this is your first offense or a subsequent offense, you deserve to have capable legal representation and to be treated fairly in court. While you are busy coping with the inconvenience that this situation has caused in your life and the stress that you are experiencing, Attorney A. Dale Naticchia can conduct a thorough investigation to ensure that any defenses that may apply in your situation are being asserted to the fullest extent. We have handled cases in communities such as Cleveland, Akron, Bedford, Berea, Parma, Garfield Heights, Rocky River, Stow, and Barberton. Call us today at 216-520-5297 or contact us online to arrange a free consultation.