If your blood alcohol content (BAC) level was at least .08 percent while operating a motor vehicle in New York, you could be charged with a DWI. However, you could also get charged with intoxicated driving if you are under the influence of an illegal drug or controlled substance.
Driving while ability impaired (DWAI) occurs when a person is operating a vehicle while under the influence of a single drug and a combination of both alcohol and drugs. A person is guilty of a drug DWAI offense if his/her ability to drive is impaired—not intoxicated—to any extent by the consumption of certain drugs.
The criminal penalties for a DWAI are similar to those of DWI; however, a DWAI conviction involving drugs doesn’t make you eligible for a conditional driver’s license or the ignition interlock device (IID) requirement. When it comes to a restricted use license, which is like a conditional license, DWAI convicts are still eligible.
The following are the penalties for a drug DWAI in New York:
- First DWAI offense – A conviction results in a maximum $1,000 fine, driver’s license suspension for at least six months, and a jail sentence of up to one year.
- Second DWAI offense in 10 years – A conviction is punishable by a maximum $5,000 fine, driver’s license revocation for at least one year, and a prison term of up to four years.
- Third DWAI offense in 10 years – A conviction carries a maximum $10,000 fine, driver’s license revocation for at least one year, and a prison sentence of up to seven years.
The implied consent rule still applies to a drug DWAI. This means if a driver refuses to take a chemical test after getting arrested for drugged driving, he/she is subject to driver’s license suspension by New York DMV.
If you have been charged with drugged driving in Rochester, contact King Law today at (585) 270-8882 and schedule a free consultation.