“Will I go to jail for OWI 2nd offense charges?”
If you are accused of Operating While Intoxicated – Second Offense, you are rightfully concerned with a potential jail sentence. The minimum sentence for OWI 2nd is 5 days. It takes a strong defense to get a plea bargain in these cases.
OWI 2nd Charges, Defenses, and Penalties
OWI 2nd Offense charges carry severe consequences in Michigan. State prosecutors, who are typically very aggressive and experienced, prosecute these misdemeanor charges. An Operating While Intoxicated is charged as a second offense if there is a prior conviction within 7 years. District Courts handle the prosecutions of OWI 2nd Offenses, which carry the following possible penalties:
- Fines of $200-1,000
- At least 5 days and no more than one year in prison
- Driver’s License revocation for one year
- 6 points on your driving record
- Possible vehicle seizure
- If the vehicle is not taken, you will lose the use of it for 90-180 days
- 30-90 days of community service
- $1,000 annual driver’s responsibility fee for two years
A person convicted of OWI 2nd must go to jail for a minimum of 5 days. Many judges in Michigan do not hesitate to hand out sentences that far exceed the mandatory minimum. Alternative sentences like tether, work release, home confinement, and in-patient treatment do not count as time in the local county jail.
“Is there any way to avoid jail for OWI 2nd offense charges?”
The answer is complicated, but in many cases, a person charged with OWI 2nd can avoid jail through a plea bargain to a lesser offense, an acquittal at trial, or an outright dismissal. Prosecutors in different jurisdictions have varying policies on plea bargains for alcohol and drug-related driving offenses. Oakland County, Macomb County, and Wayne County tend to have stringent policies prohibiting plea bargains to lesser offenses.
Despite tough prosecutors and judges, the attorneys with LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. can often get charges reduced so that jail is not required. These types of extraordinary deals only tend to be given in cases with skilled, experienced, and highly reputable defense lawyers who know how to carefully examine the evidence and use it to gain an advantage for their clients. In many of these cases, a defense lawyer can develop a factual, scientific, or medical defense, which may convince even the toughest prosecutor to offer a plea bargain.
If a defense lawyer can get OWI 2nd offense charges dismissed or achieves an acquittal at trial, there will not be any penalty imposed by the court or the Michigan Department of State.
“How do I find an experienced lawyer to defend OWI 2nd offense charges?”
If you are looking for highly experienced, aggressive and effective criminal defense lawyers to represent you on Operating While Intoxicated (OWI) or Driving Under the Influence (DUI) charges, you should call LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. for a free consultation. Every partner in the law firm has decades of experience successfully defending clients with OWI 2nd Offense charges. We will take time to meet with you can give you a confidential case evaluation.
Call us today at (248) 263-6800 for a free consultation, or complete a Request for Assistance Form and we will contact you promptly.