Multiple DUIs in Colorado

Denver Multiple DUIs Defense Attorney

The best way to avoid a conviction for a second DUI in Colorado is to keep the first DUI off your record.

The progressive nature of Colorado’s drunk-driving laws means a repeat offender will face greater consequences. And only motorists who do not have a DUI on their record fail to understand how frequently those convicted are pulled over in “routine” traffic stops.

As a veteran Denver DUI defense lawyer, James Coglan understands the increasingly punitive nature of enforcement faced by those with a drunk driving charge on their record. By fighting all charges, whether driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while ability impaired (DWAI), you stand the best chances of minimizing current and future costs associated with the charge.

In Colorado, you do not even have to test over the nationwide legal limit of .08 to face a conviction that will count as a first offense. For those with a BAC exceeding 0.05 (but less than 0.08) there is a permissible inference that their ability to operate a vehicle was impaired by the consumption of alcohol (DWAI). This makes it particularly critical to keep such a charge off your record, as do the progressive sanctions for subsequent offenses.

OffenseClassIncarcerationFinePublic Service
DWAIMisdemeanor2-180 daysUp to $50024-48 hours
DUIMisdemeanor5 days - 1 yrUp to $100048-96 hours
DWAI/DUI 2ndMisdemeanor10 days - 1 yrUp to $150048-120 hours
DWAI/DUI 3rdMisdemeanor60 days - 1 yrUp to 150048-120 hours
DWAI/DUI 4thFelony2-6 years (3yrs parole)48-120 hours


First-Time DUI Defense in Colorado

There are a number of key reasons to fight a first-offense DUI or DWAI or UDD (underage drunk driving) charge in Colorado, including:

  • A first offense will likely be the easiest to either beat, or get the state to reduce as part of a plea agreement. Even a reduction keeps a drunk-driving conviction off your record.
  • Even a DWAI counts as a DUI offense for penalty enhancement purposes. As you can see from the above chart, penalties for a second offense can be very significant (10 days mandatory jail, compared to 2; $1,500 fine, compared to $500; 120 hours of community service, compared to 24).
  • Those with a conviction on their record are significantly more likely to be stopped for a “routine” traffic violation in the future, making a second offense much more likely.
  • You will avoid the career restrictions or penalties associated with a drunk-driving conviction, which can include job loss and/or inability to qualify for certain types of positions or careers.
  • You will save thousands of dollars on your car insurance for years to come.

When facing a DUI or DWAI or UDD charge in Colorado, it’s important to know that there are both criminal penalties (fines, imprisonment, and required public service) and administrative penalties (points and license suspensions) for drunk driving. Courts impose criminal penalties, and the Colorado Department of Revenue imposes administrative penalties. Colorado DUI laws are found in sections 42-2-125, 42-2-126, 42-2-127, and 42-4-1307, Colorado Revised Statutes.

Failure to comply with a request for blood, urine or other testing may be used against you but is typically a better option than providing the state with a failed test to use against you in court. While it may not stop an administrative penalty (license suspension) it can help prevent a criminal conviction in some cases. The law presumes that every driver has consented to take a blood, breath, saliva, or urine test when requested to do so by a law enforcement officer who has probable cause to believe that the person is DUI or DWAI. Refusal to take the test is both admissible in court and a basis for revocation of a driver's license.

If you are facing a charge, the best thing you can do is call an experienced Denver drunk driving defense attorney to protect your rights.

Call the Law Office of James Colgan at 720-909-6425 for a free and confidential consultation today.

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