The legal consequences of DUIs are harsh, and they only get more stringent if your sentence is enhanced. Though driving under the influence is already illegal in Nebraska, certain factors can exacerbate the legal consequences.
If a judge believes you’ve engaged in behaviors that make you especially dangerous, you’re likely to receive an enhanced sentence. For instance, if it’s your third DUI, you may lose your license for 15 years. You could also pay higher fines or even spend time in jail.
DUI sentence enhancement factors
Driving under the influence is already a risk. Depending on someone’s decisions, he or she may engage in other risky behaviors simultaneously.
Prior convictions are one of the most common causes of enhanced sentencing. They indicate that the driver, despite previous convictions, has not learned his or her lesson. They also suggest that the person in question is likely to re-offend.
Child endangerment is another reason for enhanced sentencing. Courts often hand out harsher penalties if someone was accused of driving while impaired with kids in the car.
A high blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) is a problem too. Sometimes, people unwittingly drive with BACs above the legal limit. However, if your level was exceptionally high, a judge may find it implausible if you say you didn’t realize you were intoxicated.
Property damage or bodily harm to others are highly likely to enhance your sentence. Both are crimes even without the DUI factor.
Some, but not all, of the other factors that may lead to an enhanced sentence include:
- Breath test refusal
- No driver’s license
- Open alcohol container
- Being on probation
The consequences of an enhanced DUI sentence can make someone’s life a lot more difficult. If you’re facing an enhanced sentence, you may benefit from talking to an attorney with experience with DUIs.