A person arrested for drunk driving in Colorado will be charged with either Driving Under the Influence (“DUI”) or Driving While Ability Impaired (“DWAI”). The difference between the two charges depends on your a drivers BAC (Blood Alcohol Content). You will be cited for DWAI in Colorado if you drive with a BAC greater than 0.05 but less than 0.08. However, you will be cited for DUI if you drive with a BAC of 0.08 or greater.
It is not a crime to drink and drive in Colorado. However, you may not legally drive if your Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) has exceeded the maximum percentage allowed under Colorado law.
Not without potentially losing your license. Under the principle of express consent, every driver has consented to a blood, breath, urine, and saliva test when stopped by a law enforcement official on suspicion of DUI or DWAI. Refusal to take a chemical test is admissible in court and a basis for a separate charge which can lead to revocation of your driver’s license.
The penalties for a first DUI conviction in Colorado include:
The penalties for a 1st drunk driving conviction for a driver under 21 with a BAC greater than 0.2 but less than 0.5 include:
The license suspension increases to 6 months for a second similar conviction and a year for a third conviction.
If you are under 21 and convicted of driving with a BAC of 0.05 or greater your penalties will be similar to the penalties for adult drivers. Additionally, if you are under 21 and are caught with alcohol in your car you will automatically have your license revoked.
Yes, in some cases (although the facts for every defendant may vary and it will depend on the judge). You may be able to get a lesser sentence if you agree to undergo an alcohol treatment program.
This article is intended to be helpful and informative. But even common legal matters can become complex and stressful. A qualified drunk driving lawyer can address your particular legal needs, explain the law, and represent you in court. Take the first step now and contact a local drunk driving attorney to discuss your specific legal situation.