Drunk and drugged driving—referred to as Operating While Intoxicated (“OWI”) or Operating While Visibly Impaired in Michigan—are some of the most common crimes honest, hardworking people face. OWI is a misdemeanor punishable by up to 93 days in jail and a maximum fine of $500. Operating While Visibly Impaired carries the same criminal penalties but the driver’s license penalty imposed by the Secretary of State is reduced. Operating with a High BAC – a blood or breath alcohol content of .17 or above – is punishable by up to 180 days in jail and a fine of between $200 and $700. A High BAC conviction will result in a one-year suspension of your Michigan driver’s license, with an opportunity to obtain a restricted license after 45 days with proof of installation of an ignition interlock device.
It can be frightening and overwhelming to be accused of driving your vehicle under the influence of alcohol or controlled substances. Whether you have been charged with one of these crimes because you were pulled over by police or involved in a traffic accident, you need the help of an attorney. There are many ways in which an effective lawyer working on your behalf can weaken the government’s case against you and improve the outcome of your case. You may be able to attack the reasons for the traffic stop, the police officer’s administration of the Standardized Field Sobriety Test Battery, or the scientific validity of the blood or breath test at the heart of the prosecution’s case. Sometimes through these tactics we are able to secure a plea reduction in the form of reckless driving for example.
The attorneys at Mas/Stig-Nielsen continue to be at the cutting edge of drunk and high driving cases in Northern Michigan. We have filed successful motions to suppress, earned favorable plea reductions, and won jury trials on behalf of our clients who have been charged with operating while intoxicated type offenses. We can offer strategies for all scenarios to assist you in attaining the best possible outcome available under your individual circumstances.