If you’re trying to find a lawyer in the Colorado Springs area, do not hesitate to contact Murphy & Price, LLP. Schedule a free consultation today to meet with a lawyer.

What Is A Federal DUI?

Getting caught and charged with drunk driving is confusing and emotional process as it is. The legal proceedings and the consequences you could be facing on the state level is uncertain nonetheless. But what happens when you get charged with a federal DUI?

First of all, what is a federal DUI? It is exactly what it sounds like — a DUI that happens on government-owned land or property; they are considered a serious federal offense. If you were pulled over on federal property or land while driving a car under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you could be charged with a federal DUI and could be facing federal court charges.

Depending on the state you’re in, federal DUI consequences vary in severity. In many cases, federal DUIs are considered class B misdemeanors, but in some states, they could result in lifelong penalties. Having an experienced DUI lawyer working on your case can provide some clarity as you move forward in the legal process.

Federal land/property is not just government buildings. While it includes those, federal land and property also constitute national monuments, historic grounds, national parks, national forests, airports, military bases, courthouses, and any building (including the parking lot of it) that is owned by the U.S. government.

Again, the consequences of getting charged with a federal DUI depend on the state you’re in, but first or second time offenders can be fined up to $5,000, as well as have their driver’s license restricted for up to six months, if not longer. Depending on the severity of the charge — if someone was injured or lost their life due to your reckless driving on federal property; if you have been convicted of a DUI before; or if there was a child in the car — you might be facing jail time.

If you have found yourself in this tricky situation and are looking for an experienced attorney to work on your federal DUI case, contact Murphy & Price, LLP today to speak with a DUI lawyer.

DUIs on Military Bases

A drunk driving charge that happens on a military base is considered a federal crime. Whether you’re on active duty or you’re simply a civilian on a military base, a DUI charge can result in criminal penalties and federal court.

A Civilian On A Military Base

If you are a civilian, but were caught driving intoxicated on a military base, the consequences you could be facing depend on the severity of the situation. Your driver’s license could be revoked and your vehicle could take confiscated. You may also be required to take an alcohol education/treatment class.

An Active Duty Service Member On A Military Base

If you’re on active duty and have been charged with a DUI, your consequences are more severe. As a service member, you could be prosecuted by court-martial/military law, under the UCMJ. Depending on the situation, you could be facing judicial or non-judicial charges and punishments. Judicial punishments include facing court-martial in regards to your penalties. Non-judicial are penalties that are decided within the chain of command you’re in. This might also result in a dishonorable discharge. These penalties, again, are based on how severe the crime committed was.

An Active Duty Service Member Off A Military Base

You might be wondering if the drunk driving charge is the same for active duty members off a military base as it is on. The answer is no. If you are on active duty and have been charged with a DUI off of the base, the consequences you could be facing are different. It isn’t likely that you will be facing court-martial, like you would be if you had been charged while on a military base. That said, you could still have non-judicial consequences on the base since the DUI was a civilian crime. The military may also deem any corrective actions necessary, and they may also dismiss you from military service.

The Consequences You Could Face

No matter what, the consequences that come with getting a drunk driving charge are severe. And depending on the other factors involved, like whether or not this was your first offense, you had children with you the car, or if anyone was hurt or killed, the consequences can become even more severe. You could be facing months or even years in jail. Working with a DUI lawyer to plea bargain could reduce the charges against you and the sentencing you’re facing.

If you’re on active military duty and you’ve been charged with drunk driving, or you are a civilian who was caught driving under the influence on a military base, hiring a lawyer to work on your case to defend and mitigate the charges is the best possible way of reducing your sentence time. Contact Murphy & Price, LLP to speak with an attorney in regards to your situation.

Ways To Prevent A DUI

We understand — accidents happen. But when it comes to drinking and driving, it’s important to take preventative measures before it’s too late. Dealing with a driving under the influence charge can be time and money consuming.

Tips For Preventing Drinking and Driving

Select a designated driver — If you are going out for a fun night on the town or are headed to a party, be sure to select a designated driver for the evening. Having someone who will not drink and who has agreed to being responsible for driving everyone home will ensure that you stay safe on the roads and avoid getting behind the wheel yourself.
Watch out for your friends — If you see a friend, especially if it’s someone who had committed to being the designated driver, consuming a lot of alcohol, take away their keys and prevent them from getting behind the wheel. They will thank you in the long run.
Ask for a ride — When it comes down to it, it’s not worth driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. You’re putting your life and the lives of others at risk, as well as risking getting charged with drunk driving. If you are unable to drive because of alcohol consumption, ask for a ride home or call an Uber or Lyft. You’ll be grateful you did.

If you have found yourself facing a DUI charge and are unsure of what steps to take moving forward, don’t hesitate to contact a DUI lawyer at Murphy & Price, LLP.