3275 South Jones Blvd., Suite 105
Las Vegas, NV 89146
(702) 307-9500

‘TIS THE SEASON FOR INCREASED LEGAL TROUBLE
11/07/2012

We are full swing into the holiday season as Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas and New Years quickly approach. It is a time for family and friends to gather and celebrate, but unfortunately, all of that holiday cheer can bring about unwanted legal woes. <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office">

During the holidays there is an increase in stress and the consumption of alcohol, which together can lead to poor choices and nasty consequences. Many people will get behind the wheel while under the influence of alcohol or drugs and potentially face being charged with Driving Under the Influence (“DUI”). In Nevada, the legal definition of DUI is as follows:

1.  It is unlawful for any person who:

            (a)        Is under the influence of intoxicating liquor;

            (b)        Has a concentration of alcohol of 0.08 or more in his or her blood or breath; or

(c)        Is found by measurement within 2 hours after driving or being in actual physical control of a vehicle to have a concentration of alcohol of 0.08 or more in his or her blood or breath,

to drive or be in actual physical control of a vehicle on a highway or on premises to which the public has access.

 

            2.  It is unlawful for any person who:

            (a)        Is under the influence of a controlled substance;

            (b)        Is under the combined influence of intoxicating liquor and a controlled substance;

or

(c)        Inhales, ingests, applies or otherwise uses any chemical, poison or organic solvent, or any compound or combination of any of these, to a degree which renders the person incapable of safely driving or exercising actual physical control of a vehicle,

 

to drive or be in actual physical control of a vehicle on a highway or on premises to which the public has access. The fact that any person charged with a violation of this subsection is or has been entitled to use that drug under the laws of this State is not a defense against any charge of violating this subsection.

 

3.  It is unlawful for any person to drive or be in actual physical control of a vehicle on a highway or on premises to which the public has access with an amount of a prohibited substance in his or her blood or urine that is equal to or greater than:

 

                                                                                                Urine                      Blood

                                                                                       Nanograms              Nanograms

            Prohibited substance                                             per milliliter             per milliliter

 

            (a) Amphetamine                                                        500                          100

            (b) Cocaine                                                                150                            50

            (c) Cocaine metabolite                                                150                            50

            (d) Heroin                                                                2,000                           

            (e) Heroin metabolite:

    (1) Morphine                                                      2,000                            50

    (2) 6-monoacetyl morphine                                      10                            10

(f) Lysergic acid diethylamide                                       25                            10

(g) Marijuana                                                               10                              2

(h) Marijuana metabolite                                               15                              5

(i) Methamphetamine                                                  500                          100

(j) Phencyclidine                                                           25                            10

 

 

Therefore, you can be charged with a DUI for alcohol or drugs. In addition, the amounts necessary to constitute being “under the influence” are not very high.

 

The penalties for a DUI range depending on whether it is a 1st, 2nd, or 3rd offense within seven years and whether there are any aggravating factors such a prior criminal history or the DUI caused substantial bodily injury or death. For a first time DUI, a person can face not less than 2 days and no more than 6 months in jail, a fine of no less than $400 no more than $1000, pay for and attend a DUI education course, and if the alcohol concentration is more than .18, they will have to undergo an evaluation which may carry additional penalties such as an alcohol treatment program.  In addition, a person’s license may be suspended or revoked by the DMV due to a DUI charge.

With that said, not only may a DUI charge be lurking around the corner during the holiday season, but also charges for drug possession, battery/domestic violence, or disturbing the peace. Last year, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police released that on New Year’s Eve they arrested 159 people for felony and misdemeanor charges and an additional 68 arrests for drunk driving bringing the total to 227 arrests.

Often times, the individuals getting into trouble over the holidays are not repeat offenders and young adults but rather upstanding citizens with no criminal history and a professional career. It is important for someone facing criminal charges to consult with and hire an attorney before their first Court appearance. If you or someone you know rings in the holiday with a little too much “cheer” and is arrested as a result, make sure they contact our office so that an experienced attorney can help them resolve their charges with a plea deal or represent them in trial.

 

For more information contact us at office@fdlawlv.com.

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