One of the most common types of criminal arrests made in this country is for DUIs or Driving Under the Influence of alcohol and/or drugs. Being one of the most prevalent of crimes committed, as well as one resulting in many tragic deaths and general harm; it is necessary to take a close look at how the arrest process of DUIs is handled. In this section on DUI Arrests, we explain how detainments are made for DUIs, and how this translates into the information found in a DUI criminal record.
A DUI charge is typically realized when law enforcement has proven that an operator of a vehicle is intoxicated by drugs and/or alcohol or DUI. The most common means of a police arrest for this sort of DUI crime begins with a stop of the vehicle for either sobriety checkpoints or because the driver has shown noticeable signs of being impaired, such as swerving, running a red light, etc etc; and suspected of DUI. Once the driver is pulled over, the law enforcement handling the DUI charge will ask them a number of questions to determine if there are any auditory signs of DUI impairment, and from there-decide to conduct a variety of field sobriety tests and/or DUI breathalyzer or blood tests. While in most cases, whether or not a person is impaired in their ability to drive is what police gauge DUI by, it should be noted that a person does not need to show signs of intoxication at all for them to be committing a crime of DUI.
Which brings us to the manner by which all jurisdictions now decide illegal intoxication levels by: by a standard blood alcohol level of 0.8. Two things are influential to how DUI arrests are now handled. The first is that up until fairly recently, every state determined by what BAL would constitute a DUI. With the huge numbers of drunk driving deaths and accidents, all states have toughened up their statutes on DUI classification as well as punishment. Secondly, the decision to go by BAL came out an absence of any other way to establish a standard to go by. While a 0.8 which is the equivalent of one beer to most affects different people differently, according to metabolism, weight, and dehydration; how the blood level is measured affords a fairly equitable means of determining a DUI. This said, most persons with a 0.8 BAL are nowhere near impaired in regards to the operation of a vehicle, but whether or not a person is impaired has no legal bearing on whether or not they can be arrested for DUI.
Now, in regards to how the arrest records for DUI arrests are handled once the arrest has been made varies according to what state jurisdiction in which the crime happened and/or the nature of the crime. Most DUI crimes are processed as either gross misdemeanors or felonies depending on the following variables. Most states consider DUIs of any nature serious enough to prosecute and penalize to the full extent of federal regulation as gross misdemeanors or felonies. This would include mandatory jail time, heavy fines, restitution, and drug and alcohol counseling. In other states, punishment is less severe. First time offenses that have not incurred harm will weigh on the punishment, according to the state. Moreover, if harm was incurred from the DUI-such as murder, bodily harm, or excessive damage to property most all states will consider this reason to charge to the full extent of the law. There are a wide range of ways in which states consider DUI penalties, according to the nature and details of the specific case; but in most cases, DUI crimes are handled with severe penalty-regardless of crime classification-from state to state.