Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is never a good idea, but good people do occasionally make bad decisions. Having said that, there are some places, including Massachusetts, where you can face harsher penalties for being charged with a DUI. As is the case with every law, certain states punish offenders more harshly than others.
Massachusetts does boast the longest jail sentence for DUI offenders. First-time offenders who are found guilty of driving under the influence can face up to 30 months in jail. In addition to standard DUI laws, there are other laws on the books here that charge drivers if they operate under the influence with someone under the age of 14 in the vehicle with them.
Child endangerment, which is the charge in such cases, carries its own set of penalties in addition to those associated with the DUI charge. These include fines of up to $5,000 and between 90 days and 30 months in jail.
While the jail sentences for first-time offenders in Ohio aren’t as strict, their punishments are still lofty. First-time DUI offenders in the Buckeye State can face a suspension of their driver’s license that lasts for up to three years.
Another tough state for drunk drivers in Utah, which has the lowest legal blood-alcohol content threshold in the U.S. Anyone operating a vehicle in Utah with a BAC of 0.05% or higher is considered to be driving under the influence.
The punishments in Utah are relatively standard as compared to other state. Their surprisingly low BAC minimum is what makes The Beehive State such a tough place for DUI offenders.
Anyone who has been charged with a DUI is encouraged to quickly obtain legal representation. An attorney can help gather information about the police interaction and build a defense for their client that can minimize the punishment they receive.