Driving Impaired in Arizona
Arizona has severe laws impacting drivers suspected of driving under the influence. According to state law and enforcement, the prosecution can convict a driver by proving his or her blood alcohol concentration was 0.08 percent or more within two hours of driving.
Additionally, the state may be able to secure a DUI conviction by proving that the driver was impaired to the slightest degree, even if the driver didn’t take a breath or blood test.
BAC Below .08
A charge of impairment to the slightest degree simply means the driver didn’t have a 0.08% BAC in committing the offense. Instead, the officers determined that the driver was visibly intoxicated based on their own judgment and experience.
Law enforcement generally proves impairment by focusing on bad driving, poor performance on field sobriety tests and the driver’s demeanor.
While .08 is the legal limit for most drivers, the BAC is actually .04 or higher for commercial drivers and .02 for minors under 21 years of age.
According to Arizona law, a DUI below 0.08 will most likely be classified as a Class One misdemeanor.
This is the most serious misdemeanor offense, as conviction can result in six months in jail and up to $2,500 in fines.
If the driver has prior DUI convictions, then these charges may be higher. For example, if the driver has had two or more DUI arrests in the past five years, then he or she faces license suspension.
Someone charged with felony DUI in Arizona faces even more severe penalties.
A driver may be charged with felony DUI if caught driving with a child under the age of 15 in the vehicle, a DUI with suspended driver’s license, or a DUI with two prior DUIs within the last 60 months.
The attorneys of Thrush Law Group concentrate their efforts on defending those charged with DUI in Tucson and Phoenix. We understand that a diligent approach offers the best change for securing dismissal or acquittal. Call us for your free DUI consultation.