The Difference Between DUI and DWI in Wyoming

Technically, DUI means driving under the influence of some type drug. That can mean alcohol, prescriptions, or illegal drugs. DWI means simply driving while intoxicated, and in many states, refers to the use of alcohol. The use of the terms can be interchangeable but DWI usually refers more to the severity the drug has metabolized within the offending person’s body.

Wyoming, in its Vehicle statute 31-5-233, adds a little complication to the terms by combining them. Around the legal circles of the state, the acronym DWUI is sometimes used. This term simply means, as described in the statute, “driving or having control of vehicle while under influence of intoxicating liquor or controlled substances.”

Convicted first time offenders can receive jail time, stiff fines, community service, probation along with mandatory attendance of a drug education program, and license suspension. If you get probation, you are not sentenced, and the result does not go on your record if you successfully complete the court mandated education or treatment program. You are allowed probation only one time. A conviction without probation stays on your record permanently.

According to a news article posted in the Casper Star-Tribune on January 20, 2009, the state legislature in Cheyenne has been considering a bill that would adopt ignition interlock devices being placed on the automobiles of first time DUI convicted offenders for one year. The article quoted Representative Debbie Hammons, D-Worland, as saying “the mandatory devices have been shown to be effective in achieving results in the battle against drunk drivers in seven or eight other states.

Every community in the state has problems with drunken driving. This is an aggressive step to do something about it.” Whatever term you refer to drinking and driving or drunk driving, states are clamping down on these type traffic violations. When you face these kinds of charges, it is no time to handle your case all by yourself. You need an attorney who specializes in such cases. Contact us to help you get in contact with a DUI lawyer who can help you understand the subtle differences in the legal jargon of Wyoming law, and who specializes in representing your best interests.

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