In the state of West Virginia under Section 17C-5-2 it is against the law for any driver to operate a motorized vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of BAC of more than 0.08% or higher. It is also illegal to operate any motorized vehicle with any level of alcohol if they are not able to do so safely.
What are the first time penalties for a DUI in West Virginia?
Lets assume you are arrested for a West Virginia DUI and you have not been involved in an accident. The minimum DUI penalties include jail time of up to six months (with a BAC of less than 0.15%). If your BAC is above 0.15% you will spend at least 2 days in jail and up to six months. You will be required to pay fines of $100 to $1,000 plus court costs, and you will have your license revoked for six months, although some drivers will be eligible to participate in the Test or Lock program or to install an ignition interlock device in their car.
Reinstating your license will require purchasing special high risk insurance and paying all the reinstatement fees to the Department of Motor Vehicles in your state.
What if you are involved in a hit and run in West Virginia?
West Virginia has specific laws which outline what actions you must take if you are involved in an accident which results in injury or death. Virginia laws state that you must immediately stop and remain at the scene.
If you flee the scene and someone dies from the accident you will be charged with a felony conviction. If you flee the scene and someone has been injured you will generally be charged with a misdemeanor. If convicted of either a misdemeanor or felony charge you are likely to spend time in jail and have your license revoked.
The fact that a driver has left the scene may be evidence of guilt. If the driver is intoxicated and they flee the scene the prosecutions case against them is even stronger. In fact, the fact that a driver flees the scene and is later found to be intoxicated is strong evidence that they fled the scene to avoid alcohol detection.
What are my options after a hit and run DUI in West Virginia?
Leaving the scene of an accident, even if you are not intoxicated, is a criminal offense and you will need a good criminal defense lawyer who understands the laws of your state. They can review your case and potential defenses, including whether or not it makes sense to go to trial or discuss plea negotiation. If you have been charged with a hit and run DUI you are facing severe penalties and fines and you should not try to fight this alone.
What should you do after a hit and run in West Virginia?
1. Stop your vehicle
2. Report injuries and exchange information with other drivers.
3. Provide reasonable assistance to any person injured in the accident, including taking the injured person to physician, doctor or hospital, if it appears medically necessary or is requested by the injured person.
4. If you hit a car that is not occupied you must make a reasonable effort to find the owner or leave your contact information. You can also file an accident report with the police.