A first OVI/DUI conviction in Ohio carries a jail sentence of up to six months, driver’s license suspension for three years, and a maximum fine of $1,075. However, if certain aggravating factors are apparent, a first-time offense can lead to harsher criminal penalties or even a felony charge.
The following are some of the common aggravating factors of an Ohio OVI:
High blood alcohol content (BAC) – If your BAC is at least .17 percent–which is more than double the legal limit of .08 percent for adults who are 21 years of age or older–then you could be sentenced to a minimum jail term of three days and three days in the Driver Intervention Program, or a minimum six days in jail without enrollment in the program. The fine amount and the license suspension period remain the same.
Child endangerment – If you were arrested for an OVI with one or more children under 18 years old as passengers at the time of the incident, you may be charged with child endangerment, which is a separate crime. Therefore, you could be found guilty of two crimes in one OVI case. Child endangerment involving an OVI arrest is a first-degree misdemeanor, punishable by a maximum 180-day jail sentence and a fine not exceeding $1,000. If the minor was injured, then the offense is a fifth-degree felony, which can result in imprisonment for up to 12 months. If the minor was seriously injured, then the offense is a fourth-degree felony, which carries a prison term of up to 18 months.
Injury – If another person suffers an injury while you were allegedly driving under the influence, you could be charged with “aggravated vehicular assault,” which is a third-degree felony that is punishable by imprisonment for up to five years. If the other person suffers a serious injury, then the offense is a second-degree felony, which carries a maximum prison term of eight years.
Death – If another person is killed when you were allegedly driving under the influence, you could be charged with “aggravated vehicular homicide,” which is a second-degree felony.
Aggravated OVIs in Ohio are associated with serious felonies. If you or a loved one has been charged with such an offense, it is imperative to let a skilled criminal defense attorney protect your rights and freedom.
Facing an OVI in Dayton or Springfield? Contact Rion, Rion & Rion today at (937) 223-9133 to discuss your case. Serving clients throughout Montgomery, Greene, Warren, Clark, and Miami counties since 1938.