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Criminal Status of State Drunk Driving Laws

Criminal Status of State Drunken Driving Laws

4/24/2014

Every state has penalties for drivers who operate vehicles while intoxicated. Some do not classify impaired driving offenses as crimes, while others consider driving while intoxicated a misdemeanor criminal offense. If a person is convicted of multiple offenses of driving while intoxicated, some states charge an offender with a felony. This chart provides information about criminal charges related to driving while intoxicated for every state.

State/Jurisdiction

Citation

Criminal Status

Alabama

§32-5A-191(e), (f),(g) & (h)

First, second and third offenses are misdemeanors. Fourth or subsequent offense within five years is a class C felony.

Alaska

§§12.55.035, 12.55.125, 12.55.135 and

28.35.030

First and second offenses are class A misdemeanors.
Third or subsequent offense within 10 years is a class C felony.

American Samoa

§§22.0707 &46.2301(5)

All DUI offenses are class A misdemeanors.

Arizona

§§13-604, 13-701, 13-707, 13-801, 13-802, 28-1382 & 28-1383

First and second offense are class 1 misdemeanors.
Third or subsequent offense is a class 4 felony.

Arkansas

§§5-65-111 & 5-65-112

Fourth or subsequent offense within five years is a felony (fewer offenses not classified).

California

Vehicle Code §§23152, 23550, & 40000.15

Non-injury DUI offenses are misdemeanors. Fourth or subsequent offense is a felony if offender is sentenced to incarceration in a state prison.

Colorado

§§18-1.3-401 & 18-3-205

DUI and impaired offenses are misdemeanors, injury-related DUI offenses are class 4 felonies.

Connecticut

§§14-227a(h), 53a-25 & 53a-26

First offense is a misdemeanor, second and subsequent offenses within 10 years are felonies.

Delaware

11 §4202(b), 21 §§4177(d) & 4177B(e)(2)

First and second offenses are unclassified misdemeanors, third is a class G felony, fourth and fifth are class E felonies, sixth is a class D felony, seventh or subsequent is a class C felony.

DC

 

DUI offenses are not classified.

Florida

§§316.193 & 775.082

First and second offenses are misdemeanors, third or subsequent offense within 10 years is a third degree felony.

Georgia

§40-6-391(c) & (k)

First and second offenses are misdemeanors, third offense is a high and aggravated misdemeanor, fourth or subsequent offense is a felony.

Guam

Title 9 §§80.34, 1.19(b) & 80.30(c), and Title 16, §§18104, 18105, 18106

First and second non-injury DUI offenses are misdemeanors, third and subsequent non-injury DUI offenses and any injury-related DUI offenses are third-degree felonies.

Hawaii

§§ 291E-61 (b)

First, second and third offenses are petty misdemeanors, fourth or subsequent offense is a class C felony.

Idaho

§§18-8004C(1)(a) &(2)(a), 18-8005 & 18-8006

First and second offenses are misdemeanors, second or subsequent offense with BAC > .20 is a felony, third or subsequent offenses are felonies, DUI with bodily harm or disfigurement is a felony.

Illinois

625 ILCS 5/11-501 and
730 ILCS 5/5-8-1(a)(7) & 5-8-3(a)(1)

First and second offenses are class A misdemeanors, third and fourth offenses are class 2 felonies, fifth offense is a class 1 felony, sixth or subsequent offence is a class X felony.

Indiana

IC9-30-5-1 et seq., IC35-50-2 6 & 7, & IC35-50-3-2, et seq.

Illegal per se offense with a BAC of .08 to .15 is a class C misdemeanor; with a BAC of .15 and higher, it is a class A misdemeanor; for subsequent convictions within five years, it is a class D felony.

Iowa

§§321J.2(2) & (3), 707.6A(3), 902.9, 903.1 & 907.3(3)(c)

First offense is serious misdemeanor, second offense is an aggravated misdemeanor, third or subsequent offense is class D felony.

Kansas

§§8-1567(d), (e) (f) & (k)(3), & 21-4502(1)

First offense is class B non-person misdemeanor, second is a class A non-person misdemeanor, third or subsequent offense is a non-person felony.  

Kentucky

§§189A.010(5), 532.020 & 532.060

First offense is a class B misdemeanor, second  and third offenses within five years are class A misdemeanors, fourth or subsequent offenses are class D felonies.

Louisiana

§14:98

First and second offenses not classified, third offense can be either a misdemeanor or felony, fourth offense is a felony.

Maine

17-A MRSA §1252, and 29-A MRSA §2411 (5)(D)

First and second offenses are class D crime, third or subsequent offenses within 10 years are class C crimes.

Maryland

Trans. §§21-902, 27-101 et seq., & 27-102

All DUI offenses are misdemeanors.

Massachusetts

Ch. 90 §24(1)(a) & Ch. 274 §1

First and second offenses are unclassified, third and subsequent offenses are felonies.

Michigan

§257.625(8) & (10)

First and second offenses are misdemeanors, third or subsequent offenses are felonies.

Minnesota

§§169A.20, et seq.

-Fourth degree drunken driving offense-no aggravating Factors- Misdemeanor

-Third degree drunken driving offense - One aggravating factor-Gross Misdemeanor

-Second degree drunken driving offense with two aggravating factors-Gross Misdemeanor

-First degree drunken driving offense - A drunken driving offense with three or more aggravating factors-Felony

 

Aggravating Factors:

(1) any prior drunken driving

offense (includes prior refusal

convictions and admin. per se violations and vehicle homicide or injury offenses)

(2) driving with an alcohol concentration ≥ 0.20

(3) driving with a passenger < 16 years old if the passenger is more than 36 months younger than the driver.

Mississippi

§§63-11-30(2)(a) (b) & (c)

First and second offenses are misdemeanors, third and subsequent offenses are felonies. The fourth offense is an automatic felony carrying two to 10 years in prison. For a fourth conviction, it does not matter how many years have passed from previous convictions.

Missouri

§§577.010, 577.012, 577.023, 558.011 & 560.016

First intoxication offense is a class B misdemeanor. First per se offense is class C misdemeanor, second offenses are class A misdemeanors, third offense is a class D felony, fourth and subsequent offenses are class C felonies.

Montana

§§61-8-401, 61-8-711(1), 61-8-714, 61-8-731 & 61-8-734

First, second and third offenses are misdemeanors. Fourth and subsequent offenses within five years are felonies.

Nebraska

§§28-105, 28-106, 60-6,196 & 60-698

First and second offenses and third offense within 15 years are class W misdemeanors. Fourth offense within 15 years is a class IIIA felony. Fifth and subsequent offenses within 15 years are class III felonies. Injury related DUI offenses are class III A felonies. If a driver that has a prior felony conviction for driving with a BAC of over 0.15 is caught driving with a BAC higher than 0.02, on top of any other penalties, the act is a Class IIIA misdemeanor.

Nevada

§§193.120 & 484.3792

First and second offenses are misdemeanors, third or subsequent offenses within seven years are category B felonies.

New Hampshire

§265-A:18

First offense is a class B misdemeanor,  second and  third non-injury DUI offenses are  class A misdemeanors. Fourth or subsequent non-injury DUI offenses are felonies, and DUI with serious bodily injury is a class B felony.

New Jersey

State v Hamm 577 A.2d 1259 (NJ 1990)

§39:4-50 

Drunken driving is a violation, not a "crime".

New Mexico

§66-8-102

First, second and third offenses not classified. Fourth and fifth offense are fourth degree felonies, sixth and subsequent offenses are third degree felonies.

New York

V&T Law §§1193 & 1193(1)(c)

Driving while ability impaired offenses: First offense is a traffic infraction, second and subsequent offenses are misdemeanors.
 

Driving while intoxicated offenses: First offense is a misdemeanor, second offense within 10 years is a class E felony, third and subsequent offenses within 10 years are class D felonies.

North Carolina

§20-138.5

Fourth or subsequent offense is a class F felony, fewer offenses are classified as levels 1-5, based on length of sentence.

North Dakota

§§12.1-32-01 & 39-08-01 (2) & (4)

First and second offenses are class B misdemeanors, third and fourth offenses are class A misdemeanors, fifth and subsequent offenses are class C felony.

Ohio

§§2929.14, 2929.16, 2929.18(B)(3), 2929.19(C), 2929.21 & 4511.99(A)

First and second offenses are first degree misdemeanors, third offense is a misdemeanor, fourth offense within six years is a fourth degree felony, subsequent offenses within any time period is a third degree felony. 

Oklahoma

47 §11-902

First offense is a misdemeanor, second and subsequent offenses within 10 years are felonies.

Oregon

§§813.010(4) & (5), 161.605(3) & 161.615(1)

First, second and third offenses are class A misdemeanors. Fourth and subsequent offenses are class C felonies.

Pennsylvania

18 § 1104(1) & (2) &
75 §3731(e)(1)

First or second offenses are misdemeanors, third or subsequent offenses are second degree misdemeanors.

Puerto Rico

9 §1042

Non-injury DUI offenses are misdemeanors, first and second injury DUI offenses are misdemeanors, third or subsequent injury DUI offenses are felonies.

Rhode Island

§§11-1-2 & 31-27-2.6

First and second non-injury DUI offenses are misdemeanors, third and subsequent non-injury DUI offenses are felonies. DUI offenses with serious bodily injuries are felonies.

South Carolina

§§16-1-10, 16-1-20, 16-1-90(F), 16-1-100(A) & (C) & 56-5-2940

First offense is a misdemeanor, second offense within 10 years is a class C misdemeanor, third offense within 10 years is a class A misdemeanor, fourth and subsequent offenses within 10 years are class F felonies.

South Dakota

§§22-6-1, 22-6-2, 32-23-2 et seq.

First and second offenses are class 1 misdemeanors, third offense within 10 years is a class 6 felony. Fourth offense within 10 years is a class 5 felony, fifth and subsequent offenses are class 4 felonies.

Tennessee

§§ 40-35-111 and 55-10-403

First, second and third offenses are class A misdemeanors. Fourth and subsequent offenses within 10 years is a class E felony.

Texas

Penal Code §§12.21, 12.22, 12.34, 49.04 & 49.09

First offense is a class B misdemeanor, second offense within five years is a class A misdemeanor. Subsequent offenses are third degree felonies.

Utah

§§41-6-44 (3), (6) & (7)

First and second offenses are class B misdemeanors, third and subsequent offenses within 10 years are third degree felonies.

Vermont

13 §1 & 23 §1210

First and second offenses are misdemeanors, third and subsequent offenses are felonies.

Virginia

§§18.2-10(f), 18.2-11(a) & 18.2-270

First offense and second offenses are class 1 misdemeanors, third and subsequent offenses within 10 years are a class 6 felony.

Virgin Islands

14 §2(b)(1), 20 §493(b) & 20 §544(b)

First offense is a misdemeanor, subsequent offenses are felonies. 

Washington

§§ 9A.20.021, 46.61.502(5) & 46.61.504(5)

First through fourth offenses are gross misdemeanors, fifth and subsequent offenses are class C felonies. 

West Virginia

§17C-5-2

First and second offenses are misdemeanors, third and subsequent offenses within 10 years are felonies. 

Wisconsin

§§346.63(1) & (2), 346.65(2), 346.65(3m), 939.50 & 940.25

First offense is a municipal offense. Second and third offenses are misdemeanors. Fourth offense within five years is a class H felony. Fifth and sixth offenses are class H felonies. Seventh through ninth offenses are class G felonies, tenth and subsequent offenses are class F felonies.

Wyoming

§§6-10-101 & 31-5-233(e), (g) & (h)

First through third non-injury DUI offenses are misdemeanors. Fourth or subsequent non-injury DUI offenses within 10 years are felonies, serious injury DUIs are felonies.

 

Source:  NHTSA 2013 and NCSL 2014.

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