Throughout the month of December, law enforcement agencies across Minnesota have been sending out extra patrols, with officers working overtime, to watch for reasons to pull drivers over, hoping to make arrested for driving while impaired offenses. State officials estimate that roughly 1,300 drivers have been charged with DWI in Minnesota since the first of the month.
Drunk driving charges come with exposure to harsh consequences. A first-time offender can face potential jail time and large fines if convicted of the DWI charge in the criminal case. But Minnesota’s DWI laws also involve issues that are not tied directly into the criminal case. Drivers arrested for DWI in Minnesota will have their license to drive revoked as a result of the arrest.
The loss of license is generally separate from the criminal charge. However, a driver can challenge the implied consent loss of license, if the driver acts promptly in a civil court proceeding. But the time to perfect the challenge is very short, and often passes before a first appearance is scheduled in court for the criminal DWI charge.
Other issues can rack up after a DWI arrest. This blog has previously discussed the issue of ignition interlocks, which are required for drivers who measure 0.16 percent or more, even on a first-time offense, if the driver wishes to drive again before a year passes. For repeat offenders, ignition interlocks mat be required for a much longer period, or drivers can lose the privilege to drive completely in specified circumstances.
Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune, “Extra patrols watching for drunk drivers,” Tim Harlow, Dec. 19, 2012
- Our firm represents drivers accused of DWI in Minnesota in criminal court, as well as in potential civil proceedings, such as challenges to a DWI-related loss of license or vehicle forfeiture proceedings in Minnesota courts. For more information on the firm, please visit the Minnesota DWI defense page.