Have you been arrested for 4th offense DUI in Tennessee?
If you have recently been arrested for a fourth offense DUI in Tennessee, you are facing a serious felony offense. You are facing a mandatory jail sentence of at least 150 days and up to 6 years in jail. You are facing fines ranging from $3,000.00 to $15,000.00 and the suspension of your driving privileges of 8 years. If you are facing a felony DUI charge in Tennessee, it is essential that you contact an experienced DUI attorney immediately.
Tennessee DUI Felony Offense
Remember, an arrest for a Tennessee DUI does not mean you are guilty of the charged offense. It is important to never assume guilt. There are many defenses to DUI cases in Tennessee. You are never presumed guilty under Tennessee law and the prosecutor must prove that you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. In fact, you are presumed innocent if arrested for a DUI in Tennessee. There is hope. However, your DUI case is not going to defend itself. It is essential that you contact an experienced DUI attorney immediately in order to mount your defense. Tennessee DUI cases are extremely technical. DUI cases require an attorney to have to special knowledge in order to defend these unique cases.
Fourth DUI Defense
The typical Tennessee DUI defense includes challenging the reason why you were stopped in the first place. The police must probable cause in order to initiate the traffic stop. You must clearly violate some well-established traffic law or criminal statute in order for the police to activate their emergency equipment. They cannot merely pull you over based upon a hunch. It is also necessary to challenge the actual probable cause for your arrest, the arrest procedures, and challenge the accuracy of the chemical test given in your case. Blood and breathalyzer tests can be successfully challenged. It is also possible to challenge the accuracy and interpretation of the field sobriety tests used in your Tennessee fourth offense DUI case. Field sobriety tests are subjective in nature and these tests can be challenged. You should never assume that these tests were conducted and judged accurately.
Common punishments for fourth DUI Tennessee
- Classification as a felony
- Mandatory minimum jail time of 150 days
- Maximum jail sentence of 6 years
- Fines ranging from $3,000.00 to $15,000.00
- 8 years loss of license
- Alcohol and/or drug counseling.
As you can see, the stakes are extremely high in fourth offense DUI cases in Tennessee. If convicted, you will be classified as a felony offender which requires at least 150 days in jail along with hefty fines and loss of driver’s license for a period of 8 years. It is also highly probable that you be declared a Tennessee Habitual Motor Offender which could also result in future felony charges.
Tennessee Felony Cases
Having aggressive and thorough representation in felony matters is critical. Do not wait until it is too late. The prosecutor has access to extensive resources including detectives, patrol officers, crime labs, and forensic experts. Hiring an attorney is the most important step you can take to protect your rights. Never delay in contacting an attorney if you believe that criminal charges have been or are going to be filed against you. There are several stages early on in a case that cannot be overlooked.
Please take a look below at the legal issues I can assist and the possible penalties for a felony conviction.
- Tennessee Felony (Class A): Possible jail sentence of 15 to 60 years, with a maximum fine of $50,000.00 for most offenses and $500,000.00 for drug offenses.
- Tennessee Felony (Class B): Possible jail sentence of 8 to 30 years, with a maximum fine of $25,000.00 for most offenses and $100,000.00 for drug offenses.
- Tennessee Felony (Class C): Possible jail sentence of 3 to 15 years, with a maximum fine of $10,000.00 for most offenses and $100,000 for drug offenses.
- Tennessee Felony (Class D): Possible jail sentence of 2 to 12 years, with a maximum fine of $5,000.00 for most offenses and $50,000.00 for drugs.
- Tennessee Felony (Class E): Possible jail sentence of 1 to 6 years, with a maximum fine of $3,000.00 for most offenses and $5,000.00 for drugs.
Tennessee DUI Laws
When you are arrested for driving drunk in Tennessee, your situation can feel hopeless. Many people fear the worst possible outcome and are rightly concerned for their future.
The important thing to remember, however, is that you are innocent until proven guilty in the United States. An arrest does not always lead to a conviction and with the help of a Nashville DUI lawyer; you can hopefully walk away with your freedom and good name intact.
Innocent Until Proven Guilty
Under Tennessee DUI law, a prosecutor will be assigned to your case after you have been arrested for drunk driving. The prosecutor is a lawyer who works for the government and who handles criminal cases on behalf of the state.
The prosecutor has the burden of proving beyond a reasonable doubt that you are guilty of drunk driving in order to get a conviction. This means the prosecutor must convince the court that it is almost certainly true that you were driving drunk. In addition, the prosecutor must specifically prove all of the elements of the case, or all of the things that the DUI law includes in its definition of drunk/impaired driving.
The Tennessee laws addressing DUI dictate that the prosecutor must prove:
- Your identity
- As a driver
- Of a motor vehicle
- On a public road
- In the state of Tennessee
- Who was in active physical control of the motor vehicle
- While you had a BAC of .08 (within two hours of driving); or while you were under the influence of alcohol, (legal or illegal) drugs or a combination of drugs and alcohol.
The prosecutor will use the evidence against you to try to secure a conviction. This evidence may include law enforcement testimony, photographs and video from the scene of your arrest, any statements that you make about your guilt and information about your blood alcohol content or drugs in your system. The information about your BAC or about drugs in your system can be obtained through a breathalyzer test or a blood test.
Avoiding DUI Conviction in Tennessee
If the prosecutor is not able to prove any element of the DUI charges, then you cannot be convicted under Tennessee DUI law. Therefore, your Nashville DUI lawyer may try a number of tactics to poke holes in the prosecutor’s case so that you can be found innocent of the charges.
A Tennessee DUI lawyer can argue that there was something wrong with the evidence, such as a faulty breath test machine or a police officer who was not properly trained. The Tennessee DUI attorney can also argue that your constitutional rights were violated in the collection of the evidence and that it should therefore not be used against you at all.