Those who drive while impaired in Massachusetts could face stiff criminal penalties. These punishments could be enhanced based on the facts of a specific case. For instance, if an individual had a blood alcohol content of .15% or higher, they may be subject to a mandatory minimum jail sentence or an automatic license suspension. Individuals who have previous DUI convictions may also face harsher penalties.
Drivers who cause property damage or injure another person because of their actions while impaired may be seen as a greater threat to public safety. Therefore, they could receive a harsher sentence that reflects the gravity of what they have done. The same could be true for someone who has a child in the car while operating under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
If a person is convicted of drunk driving, they may be required to use an ignition interlock device (IID) as part of their sentence. The device is designed to prevent the car from starting if it detects alcohol on a driver’s breath. Those who manage to drive while impaired despite the presence of an IID are more likely to receive more stringent penalties in their current cases.
Someone who has been charged with a DUI is entitled to assistance from a criminal defense attorney. The lawyer may cast doubt upon the results of blood or other tests that were used to obtain the drunk or impaired driving charges. An attorney might also assert that tests were conducted improperly or that devices used to conduct them were not properly calibrated. This could result in a favorable plea deal or an outright acquittal for a defendant.