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Steven A. Tomeo & Associates, LLC

As I go through the state to these conferences or doing legal education for DUIs and meet people from other states which have had a history of more tolerance with the alcohol consumption, Connecticut’s history is tough. In terms of the penalties Connecticut is stricter, often giving longer sentences and larger fines, whether it is a felony or a misdemeanor. Connecticut also includes DUI convictions that a person gets out of state. For example, if you are convicted of DUI in New York and then later you are charged with DUI in Connecticut, you could be treated as a second offender in the state of Connecticut. A second offense in Connecticut is a felony punishable by up to two years in jail and a minimum mandatory sentence of 120 days.

If you are a first offender in the state of Connecticut and you have never been convicted of DUI in any other state either, you might be able to get out of it by taking a Diversionary Program called the Pre-Trial Alcohol Education Program. When you apply for the program, they run a database check to find out if you have any other convictions throughout the United States. If you are found eligible, you will be placed into a program that will last either 10 or 15 weekly classes, depending upon your evaluation.

You could also be ordered to do a Victim Impact Panel given by the Mothers Against Drunk Driving and complete treatment if they feel your drinking problem is severe. If you comply with all the judge’s orders and complete your classes and/or treatment, it is possible that the case could be dismissed and erased from your record.

Penalties for operation while under the influence. Any person who violates any provision of subsection (a) of this section shall: (1) For conviction of a first violation, (A) be fined not less than five hundred dollars or more than one thousand dollars, and (B) be (i) imprisoned not more than six months, forty-eight consecutive hours of which may not be suspended or reduced in any manner, or (ii) imprisoned not more than six months, with the execution of such sentence of imprisonment suspended entirely and a period of probation imposed requiring as a condition of such probation that such person perform one hundred hours of community service, as defined in section 14-227e, and (C) have such person’s motor vehicle operator’s license or nonresident operating privilege suspended for forty-five days and, as a condition for the restoration of such license, be required to install an ignition interlock device on each motor vehicle owned or operated by such person and, upon such restoration, be prohibited for the one-year period following such restoration from operating a motor vehicle unless such motor vehicle is equipped with a functioning, approved ignition interlock device, as defined in section 14-227j; (2) for conviction of a second violation within ten years after a prior conviction for the same offense, (A) be fined not less than one thousand dollars or more than four thousand dollars, (B) be imprisoned not more than two years, one hundred twenty consecutive days of which may not be suspended or reduced in any manner, and sentenced to a period of probation requiring as a condition of such probation that such person: (i) Perform one hundred hours of community service, as defined in section 14-227e, (ii) submit to an assessment through the Court Support Services Division of the Judicial Branch of the degree of such person’s alcohol or drug abuse, and (iii) undergo a treatment program if so ordered, and (C) have such person’s motor vehicle operator’s license or nonresident operating privilege suspended for forty-five days and, as a condition for the restoration of such license, be required to install an ignition interlock device on each motor vehicle owned or operated by such person and, upon such restoration, be prohibited for the three-year period following such restoration from operating a motor vehicle unless such motor vehicle is equipped with a functioning, approved ignition interlock device, as defined in section 14-227j, except that for the first year of such three-year period, such person’s operation of a motor vehicle shall be limited to such person’s transportation to or from work or school, an alcohol or drug abuse treatment program, an ignition interlock device service center or an appointment with a probation officer; and (3) for conviction of a third and subsequent violation within ten years after a prior conviction for the same offense, (A) be fined not less than two thousand dollars or more than eight thousand dollars, (B) be imprisoned not more than three years, one year of which may not be suspended or reduced in any manner, and sentenced to a period of probation requiring as a condition of such probation that such person: (i) Perform one hundred hours of community service, as defined in section 14-227e, (ii) submit to an assessment through the Court Support Services Division of the Judicial Branch of the degree of such person’s alcohol or drug abuse, and (iii) undergo a treatment program if so ordered, and (C) have such person’s motor vehicle operator’s license or nonresident operating privilege permanently revoked upon such third offense, except that if such person’s revocation is reversed or reduced pursuant to subsection (i) of section 14-111, such person shall be prohibited from operating a motor vehicle unless such motor vehicle is equipped with a functioning, approved ignition interlock device, as defined in section 14-227j, for the time period prescribed in subdivision (2) of subsection (i) of section 14-111. For purposes of the imposition of penalties for a second or third and subsequent offense pursuant to this subsection, a conviction under the provisions of subsection (a) of this section in effect on October 1, 1981, or as amended thereafter, a conviction under the provisions of either subdivision (1) or (2) of subsection (a) of this section, a conviction under the provisions of section 14-227m, a conviction under the provisions of subdivision (1) or (2) of subsection (a) of section 14-227n, a conviction under the provisions of section 53a-56b or 53a-60d or a conviction in any other state of any offense the essential elements of which are determined by the court to be substantially the same as subdivision (1) or (2) of subsection (a) of this section, section 14-227m, subdivision (1) or (2) of subsection (a) of section 14-227n or section 53a-56b or 53a-60d, shall constitute a prior conviction for the same offense.

If your only DUI charges are in Connecticut, you can have the first one removed from your record by attending the alcohol education program. Therefore, if you are charged with DUI again in Connecticut a couple of years later, you are back at first offense status. Many times, you get a six-month suspended sentence, 100 hours of community service, probation for a year to 18 months, fine, fees and costs of probation. If you had a conviction in another state first and then get your second DUI charge in Connecticut, it is then a felony.

Connecticut can be easier than most on the first and second time around but when you get past that, there is no discretionary sentencing and there are mandatory minimums. In all the cases with license suspension, after your suspension is over with, you must drive with an ignition interlock device for a period.

For more information on DUI Sentencing in Connecticut, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (860) 764-2744 today.

STEVEN TOMEO, ESQ.

CALL NOW TO SET UP A FREE CONSULTATION
(860) 764-2744

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