Most states in the U.S. have different categories for their drunk driving offenses. It is not uncommon to hear about a person taking a plea bargain for a “wet reckless” charge, reducing the criminal impact from a misdemeanor DUI. It is also not unheard of for an offender to face felony charges for DUI manslaughter or DUI child endangerment. Each state has the authority to structure drunk driving laws according to the needs of the state. And while that may not be the best practice in states like Wisconsin, where drunk driving laws are more lenient (and taken less seriously), an Arizona DUI has pretty strict and transparent consequences.
The three Arizona DUI types you’ll likely face have graduated penalties, including:
- First-offense Arizona DUI: 10 – 90 days in jail, minimum, plus at least $1,250 in fines. Possible 12-month license revocation (if second or subsequent offense). Alcohol screening and possible treatment, community service, and mandatory ignition interlock requirement.
- Extreme DUI (BAC of .15 percent or higher): 30 – 120 days in jail (no probation or suspended sentence), depending on the number of DUI offenses, minimum fines of $2,500, alcohol screening/treatment, ignition interlock device.
- Aggravated DUI: Two years in prison, one-year license revocation, alcohol screening/treatment, community service and ignition interlock requirement in addition to any other criminal penalties for child endangerment, manslaughter, etc.
Keep in mind that any attempts to drive illegally or without an ignition interlock in Arizona will only cause further fines, a longer suspension on your license, removal from the ignition interlock program and possible impoundment of your vehicle.
With such a strict approach to eliminating drunk driving, there’s not an Arizona DUI offender who doesn’t realize the serious nature of their conviction. Arizona is at the forefront of drunk driving prevention, serving as an example of a state that doesn’t complicate consequences or make it easy to reduce a criminal charge to a plea bargain.