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DUI Related Offenses

Driving under the influence is a serious charge that can be accompanied by various other offenses. When a driver causes an accident, inflicts injuries, damages property, or attempts to flee the scene, the implications of a DUI escalate substantially. The charges faced by the driver depend on the circumstances of the case, and the severity of the penalties increases with the number of offenses. Some commonly associated charges in relation to a DUI include hit and run, fleeing the police, public intoxication, and implied consent.

Public Intoxication

In Pennsylvania, it is against the law to be in a public place and exhibit signs of drunkenness or substance influence in a way that poses a danger to oneself or others. Public intoxication is defined by the following actions:

  • Annoying those around you
  • Endangering yourself
  • Endangering others

According to the law, a public place encompasses any area accessible to the general public, whether it’s privately owned but open to public access (such as a gated community or common areas of an apartment complex). If you cause a disturbance in such an area, you could be charged with public intoxication.

Public intoxication is classified as a summary offense in Pennsylvania and can result in a fine of up to $500. For second or subsequent offenses, the fine may be higher.

Hit and Run: Understanding the Consequences

When someone finds themselves in the unfortunate situation of causing an accident while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, their mind often races with thoughts of potential arrest and legal ramifications. In a moment of panic, some individuals may choose to flee the scene, in the hopes of escaping punishment. However, this act, known as a hit and run, only leads to harsher penalties in the end, as judges and prosecutors take this crime very seriously.

The severity of a hit and run offense, whether it is classified as a felony or misdemeanor, depends on various factors unique to each case. Nevertheless, the consequences are significant and should not be taken lightly. In situations where the accident only involves property damage, the driver can face a third-degree misdemeanor, which may result in imprisonment for up to a year and fines of up to $2,500.

However, when the accident causes injury to someone other than the driver, the hit and run charge escalates to a third-degree felony. This offense carries a punishment of up to seven years in prison and fines as high as $1,000.

In the most tragic cases, where the accident results in a fatality and the driver chooses to flee, the charge again escalates to a third-degree felony. Conviction for this crime can lead to a jail term of up to seven years and fines as high as $2,500.

Engaging with Law Enforcement during an Incident

Picture yourself in a situation where you suddenly hear the blaring sirens and see flashing lights in your rearview mirror after causing an accident. It can indeed be an alarming experience. Many individuals often panic, especially if they suspect that their use of drugs or alcohol may be at fault. However, it is crucial to understand the severity of fleeing from an accident and engaging in a high-speed chase with law enforcement.

Fleeing the police is an offense that is taken extremely seriously by law enforcement officers, judges, and prosecutors. Even if an accident does not occur, failing to pull over when signaled to do so by a police officer can result in charges of eluding the police. According to Pennsylvania law, a signal can include hand gestures, the officer’s voice, or the use of sirens and emergency lights. Ignoring any of these signals can lead to charges of fleeing and eluding the police.

Typically, fleeing the police is considered a second-degree misdemeanor, carrying a minimum jail sentence of two years and fines as high as $2,000. However, if a driver attempts to flee and the situation escalates into a high-speed chase that endangers other drivers, crosses state lines, or involves driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, the charge can become a third-degree felony. In such cases, the consequences can include up to seven years in prison and a minimum fine of $15,000.

Apart from these serious penalties, fleeing the police can also result in the suspension of a driver’s license. It is essential to remember that engaging positively with law enforcement during such incidents is the best course of action to ensure a fair and safe resolution.

Pennsylvania’s Implied Consent Law requires drivers with a valid license to comply with blood, breath, urine, or chemical testing if requested by law enforcement. While drivers have the option to decline roadside sobriety tests, refusal of other tests is not permitted. However, the prosecution must establish that the officer provided a warning about the consequences of refusal before charging a driver with implied consent. Failing to issue a warning prevents the prosecution from pursuing the charge, but subsequent violations can lead to an 18-month license suspension.

If you find yourself facing any of these charges, it is crucial to secure the services of a proficient Beaver DUI attorney well-versed in DUI law and procedures. Sean Logue and his dedicated associates at Logue Law, renowned Beaver criminal attorneys, possess the necessary expertise to navigate your case. Fearlessly challenging the prosecution, they will tenaciously fight for the most favorable outcome. Contact them for a free initial consultation at (844) PITT-DUI or 412-389-0805, or reach out online here. Logue Law proudly serves Beaver, Ohio, and West Virginia, providing steadfast advocacy and unwavering support.

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Sean is the best criminal defense lawyer ever! He answered all questions and returned all calls and texts. He was informed. He was attentive and got us an outcome that we never expected! Want someone who will fight for you and protect your rights? If yes, then Sean Logue is the attorney you want on...

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