With State College being so rife with young people who might decide to go to parties and drink with relatively high frequency, there is a good possibility that people will do just that. When they are legally allowed to do so, there is nothing wrong with it. However, many might decide to get behind the wheel after drinking. Whether they have had a small amount of alcohol or not, this is dangerous and can lead to a charge of driving while intoxicated.
For students at State College, alcohol will undoubtedly be present whether they are of legal age to consume it or not. It is unavoidable in college. Many will violate the law by drinking underage and try to purchase alcohol. While they might not see it as an egregious legal violation, the fact is that they can face charges for alcohol-related offenses. This is especially problematic if the underage person gets behind the wheel and is accused of driving while intoxicated. Not only could they face charges for DWI, but the blood-alcohol content level to warrant DWI charges is lower for a person under 21 than it is for someone of legal drinking age. Understanding Zero Tolerance in Pennsylvania is critical toward a defense.
You may think that once you are arrested on DUI charges in Pennsylvania you are all-but-guaranteed to be convicted. However, the reality is that some people have their DUI charges dismissed, or at the very at least reduced. If you choose to hire a criminal defense attorney to help you, you may be able to use one or more of the following defenses to fight the charges against you.
A drunk driving accident may be one of the most devastating ways to lose a child. That's why the "Pennsylvania Parents Against Impaired Driving" group is pushing for change by demanding that lawmakers pass Senate Bill 961, which would increase penalties for repeat DUI offenders. The bill was approved by the Senate in April and later this month, lawmakers will return to the Capitol and will have less than 10 session days to pass the bill.
If a police officer has reason to believe that you are driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they can arrest you on DUI charges. However, DUI charges may not be the only charges you face. A driver charged with drunk driving may face additional charges, depending on the circumstances surrounding the arrest. For example, a Pennsylvania man was recently charged with a DUI, and is also facing four counts of endangering the welfare of children and recklessly endangering another person after a rollover accident.
Many people who are facing drunk driving charges in Pennsylvania have no prior arrests and, therefore, do not know what to expect of the criminal court process that awaits them. If you choose to hire an attorney, they can walk you through each step of the DUI court procedure and attempt to make sure you are prepared for what comes next.
Driving under the influence is one of the most dangerous forms of driver negligence. Fortunately, Pennsylvania residents appear to be getting the message. The Pennsylvania Uniform Crime Report showed a 33 percent decline in drunk and drugged driving arrests in Philadelphia from 2009 to 2017. During the same period, the data shows a 13 percent decline in DUI arrests statewide.
In all 50 states, driving with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 or higher is considered driving under the influence. Pennsylvania, however, is unique in that it adopted a three-tier system that implemented three levels of DUI enforcement.
If a police officer suspects that you have been drinking and driving, it is likely that he or she will arrest you and ask you to submit to a Breathalyzer test to determine your blood alcohol concentration. If the test reveals a BAC level of .08 percent or more (for drivers 21 and older), you may be charged criminally for driving under the influence. However, many people wonder if they can legally refuse to take the test in the first place.
Pennsylvania is an "implied consent" state. What this means is that in exchange for the privilege to drive on the state's streets, roads and highways, you agree to consent to a chemical test if a law enforcement officer has formed a reasonable suspicion that you are driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or a controlled substance. If you refuse the test, you could lose your license and face some heavy financial penalties.