First Offense Salisbury DUI Lawyer
If this is a defendant’s first DUI charge, the case will be heard in the district court in Salisbury, Maryland. Even if it is a first DUI for a defendant, an attorney can help fighting the charges against you. This is because the prosecutor’s office will aggressively pursue the case regardless of whether it is the defendant’s first charge or not. It is unlikely that the case would be pled down to a lesser traffic charge therefore a defendant should hire an attorney that will review the charges and police reports and make a determination of whether the state can prove its case. Or, if there is a viable suppression motion or if it is in the defendant’s best interest to enter plea negotiations.
To discuss your case and the specific circumstances surrounding your charge, call and schedule a free consultation with a Salisbury DUI lawyer today.
Prosecutors in Salisbury First Time DUI Cases
Prosecutors handle first time DUI charges very aggressively from the Salisbury prosecutor’s office standpoint. It does not matter if this is the defendant’s first DUI case or fourth DUI case, as any DUI case will be handled very aggressively. The prosecutor’s office does not typically allow the defendant to plead down to a non-DUI offense and does not offer a diversionary program for DUIs. In fact DUIs are specifically excluded from any diversionary programs.
Penalties for a First Time DUI in Salisbury
Under the law the maximum penalty for a first conviction for a DUI is a maximum of one year in jail and/or a $1000 fine. In Salisbury the prosecutors do not offer any sort of diversionary programs for DUIs so the defendants needs to be prepared that this case is going to go to court. Typically the judges will offer probation before judgment for a first offender DUI. This means that if the defendant successfully completes probation then there will not be any points assessed to the defendant’s driving record.
However it is important to know that the probation before a judgement will always be on the driving record. Under the law, it cannot be expunged.
Probation before judgment is a favorable sentencing disposition however it is important for a defendant to know that probation can be very expensive and complicated. Oftentimes defendants will have to pay for regular probation supervision and pay an addition supervision fee every month to the drunk driving monitoring program.
So while there is some leniency for a first offender, there are still severe consequences to the defendant.
How Do Salisbury Courts Treat First Time DUIs?
Most judges in Salisbury will offer the defendant an opportunity to keep his record clean by offering a first offender probation before judgment. The benefits of probation before a judgment are that if the defendant successfully completes the period of probation, the conviction will not appear as a guilty finding, it would instead be referred to as a probation before judgment.
Another benefit of probation before a judgment is that the MVA will not assess the points that it typically would if a defendant has been convicted of a DUI. An additional benefit to that is that typically auto insurance companies will not raise their rates so long as the defendant does not have points assessed.
So the court will grant that bit of leniency to a first offender. There are certainly exceptions to that rule for example the court will be less likely to grant probation before a judgement if the charges also included some sort of accident or property damage or injury to another person. To learn more about probation before judgement or discuss the penalties associated with your case, call and schedule a consultation with a Salisbury DUI lawyer today.