When you’re arrested for drunk driving in Indiana, you enter a legal process that could lead you to fines, driver’s license suspension and even time in prison. Operating a vehicle while intoxicated (OWI), also called driving under the influence (DUI), is a significant criminal offense. Even though you may potentially lose your driving privileges and may be taken to prison, you should work with a criminal defense lawyer to strategize your defense to protect your rights.
Tanzillo Stassin & Babcock offer the support you need during this critical time. We cover the possible steps after a DUI arrest in Indiana. For specific advice regarding your case, call us for a consultation.
Release From Jail
Law enforcement will usually release a person accused of DUI within a day after the arrest, depending on that individual’s criminal history. You might need to post bail for your release. Furthermore, the severity surrounding the events of the DUI affects how much time you are held and the amount of bail. For instance, if you were accused of causing an accident that hurt someone, this will be treated more seriously by the criminal justice system than a person who was arrested at a routine traffic stop. You need experienced criminal defense representation to help you reduce your bond or win release through your recognizance.
The initial hearing is typically held prior to the defendant’s release from jail. The judge will inform you of your constitutional rights and the charges you face. The judge may also review a request for bail reductions or decide if you are eligible for a pre-trial release program. Your attorneys will then represent you in the hearing, where law enforcement will provide evidence against you.
Overview of OWI Penalties
Indiana law severely punishes those convicted of drunk driving. Depending on the exact circumstances involving the incident, such as a high blood alcohol concentration (BAC) or having previous DUI records, you might be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony. There are certain aggravating factors that may further increase the severity of the charges:
- Prior OWI convictions
- Your passenger was under 18 years old
- Someone was physically injured due to your driving
- The accident you caused killed someone
The discovery phase takes place before the next court date. Law enforcement and the prosecutor will disclose evidence against you, which may include chemical test results, eyewitness reports and dashcam video. Your attorney will help you proceed, whether by fighting the charges or through negotiation.
Pretrial conferences allow prosecution and defense attorneys to review the evidence and determine how they will proceed. There may be a single pretrial conference or several. The goal of your attorney is to secure reduced charges or have them dropped altogether before a trial ever happens.
Discuss Your Case With Our Dyer DUI Lawyers
If you’re in need of a knowledgeable DUI lawyer who can represent your best interests, call Tanzillo Stassin & Babcock for a consultation. We can review your case and help you decide what steps would benefit your case.