Is DUI Arrest a Crime in California?

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Guest Post By: Christopher J McCann an Orange County criminal defense DUI lawyer

Discover if DUI Arrest is a Crime in California

Usually, in California, a first-time DUI is charged as a misdemeanor, not as a crime. As long as there are no mitigating or aggravating factors, you will be charged with misdemeanor called a “simple DUI”, especially when you are facing the first three DUI cases. However, there are three cases when a simple DUI in California is charged as a felony.

1. Your drunk driving causes an injury or the death of other people. When another person undergoes injury or death either because you’ve driven in a negligent manner, committed a vehicle code violation or drove under influence, California prosecutors might charge you with a felony DUI.

2. You have a prior felony DUI. In case you are arrested in California for DUI and you already had a felony DUI, you might be charged with crime.

3. You have multiple convictions over a 10-years period. In the state of California, driving under influence is considered a “priorable” offense. These priorable offenses add up every time you are convicted for a similar offense. Consequently, if you have suffered more than three DUI convictions over the last 10 years, you are more prone to be charged with a crime.

I hope this helps clarify the question to “Is DUI Arrest a Crime in California”.

About Guest Post Author: 

Christopher J. McCann is an Orange County criminal defense lawyer. Mr. McCann is also a practicing La Palma DUI Lawyer CA and Seal Beach DUI lawyer at the law offices of Christopher J. McCann who was recently awarded his 6th SuperLawyers Magazine “Rising Star” award. You can follow Chris tweets at @cjm_law_firm or posts at Orange County DUI Lawyers Blog

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