Make no mistake about it, a charge of DWI in New York State is a crime and carries with it serious consequences. A conviction for DWI (Vehicle and Traffic Law §1192(2) or 1192(3)) is a misdemeanor and carries with it the same range of potential sentences as any other misdemeanor crime in New York, including up to one year in jail, up to 3 years of probation supervision, a fine of up to $1000, mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device in your vehicle and other court and DMV fees that can cost thousands of more dollars. As harsh as that sounds, if you are charged with a felony level DWI, the potential consequences are even greater. So what makes the crime of DWI a felony in New York?
Prior DWI convictions
If you have previously been convicted of DWI within the last 10 years from the date of the current charge, V&T Law §1193(1)(c) elevates the crime of DWI to a class E felony, exposing those convicted of this charge to up to 1⅓-4 years in state prison, probation supervision for up to five years, a fine between $1000-$5000 and a license revocation for at least one year.
If you have two previous DWI convictions within the last 10 years from the date of the current charge, the charge is elevated to a D felony, exposing those convicted of this charge to up to 2⅓-7 years in state prison, a fine between $2000-$5000 and a license revocation of at least five years.
DWI in New York State and Leandra’s Law
In 2009 Governor Cuomo signed into law a new statute that created a new form of felony DWI, Aggravated DWI. Under this law, it is a felony offense to operate a motor vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol while having a passenger in the vehicle younger than 16 years old….even for a first time DWI offender!
If a person is convicted of felony Aggravated DWI, they face the same consequences as those convicted of any E felony, including incarceration for up to 1⅓-4 years, probation supervision for up to five years and fines ranging from $1000-$10000, along with lengthy license revocations and mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device.
Call Us Now
If you or someone you know is charged with a DWI, particularly a felony level DWI, it is imperative that they have the services of an attorney that knows not only the intricacies of these laws, but also the experience to defend you against them and minimize the severity of the consequences that you face. Our team at Cambareri & Brenneck is comprised entirely of former prosecutors, including former DWI prosecutors. We know these laws and we know how to navigate through the criminal justice system to ensure the best possible outcome if you are facing a felony DWI charge. We can help. At Cambareri & Brenneck we are working to give you back your life.