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What is aggravated DWI?

If you are charged with a DWI, your sentencing may vary greatly depending on the specific factors involved in your case. Your objective as the defendant is to prove mitigating factors, while the prosecution attempts to prove aggravating factors. Mitigating factors offer explanations for your behavior, and they may lower your sentencing if the court accepts their veracity.

Aggravating factors, on the other hand, are situations or behaviors on your part that may require greater punishment. According to the North Carolina Statutes, some grossly aggravating factors include driving under the influence with a physically dependent person or a minor in the vehicle, causing severe harm to another person as a result of your impairment or driving under while impaired after a previous conviction within the past seven years. These may carry even more severe consequences than standard aggravating factors, which include recklessness, exceeding the speed limit by more than 30 miles per hour and irresponsible driving resulting in an accident, among other things. The court may consider additional factors that are unique to your case.

The punishment for an Aggravated Level One DWI could be a fine of up to $10,000. You may even receive a prison sentence for one to three years. During that time, you may not be eligible for parole. However, it may be possible for the courts to release you four months early. You would then have an alcohol monitoring system, and you would not be able to consume any alcohol during the remaining four months of your sentencing. In some circumstances, you could qualify for a probation period rather than jail time. This information is provided solely to educate you about aggravated DWIs, and it should not be interpreted as legal advice.

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