How does injuring someone affect DUI penalties in California?

On Behalf of | Jan 16, 2024 | Criminal Defense |

Driving under the influence escalates legal consequences when the impairment results in injury to others. California has stringent penalties in place to address the severity of DUI offenses when they lead to harm.

Understanding how injuring someone affects DUI penalties is important for anyone navigating the legal repercussions of impaired driving.

Enhanced penalties for DUI with injury

When a DUI incident involves an injury to another person, the legal consequences become more severe. These penalties include increased fines, longer license suspension periods and the potential for incarceration. The injuries’ severity can impact the gravity of the charges and penalties.

Vehicular assault charges

In cases where injuries are substantial, individuals may face vehicular assault charges. Such charges carry even more severe penalties. Vehicular assault charges also elevate the DUI offense to a felony, which may lead to a lengthy prison sentence.

Impact on sentencing and rehabilitation programs

In addition to legal penalties, injuring someone while driving under the influence can influence the sentencing phase. It can also lead to participation in rehabilitation programs. Judges may impose stricter sentences and require the completion of substance abuse programs as part of the rehabilitation process. This dual focus on punishment and rehabilitation aims to address underlying issues contributing to impaired driving.

Considerations for future offenses

When a DUI leads to an injury, the legal repercussions extend beyond the immediate case. The presence of injuries may impact future DUI charges and lead to enhanced penalties if subsequent offenses occur.

Per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1.5% of California residents report driving after drinking too much. Seeking guidance and addressing underlying issues can help mitigate the impact of these penalties. It can also foster rehabilitation.