In Youngstown, a High BAC = .17 Percent or Higher
No OVI charge is minor, but if your blood alcohol content was .17 percent or higher, it becomes even more serious. Your Youngstown OVI lawyer understands the methods used by police and state troopers in the area to determine if a person is driving drunk.
How is a Low OVI Different From a High OVI?
In Ohio, a low OVI is called a “low test” OVI. In this case, the driver’s BAC is below .17 percent.
However, if the driver’s BAC is .17 percent or higher, he is charged with a “high test” OVI. This classification comes with harsher penalties than a low test OVI does.
The Ohio Revised Code defines a high test result as a breath test or test of whole blood that comes out at .17 or higher, a urine test that comes out at .238 percent or higher, or a plasma or blood serum test that shows .204 percent or higher. The details of this definition are laid out in Section 4511.19(A)(1)(h).
The Code has specific penalties listed for a first-OVI that comes out as a high test OVI.
- Mandatory yellow license plates
- 6 days in jail, minimum, OR 3 days in jail and 3 days in a driver intervention program. The jail sentence could be as long as 6 months.
- Optional installation of ignition interlock device, paid for by the offender. This is up to the judge’s discretion.
- Fines ranging from $375 to $1,075
- No driving privileges for the first 15 days following the date of the arrest for an ALS suspension
- An additional driver’s license suspension, imposed by the judge, of 6 months to 3 years.
A driver intervention program such as the one mentioned above is a three-day alcohol and drug treatment and education program. The judge must approve the program suggested. He or she may order an offender to participate, depending on the case. Often, an offender’s attorney will suggest his client enter a program as a proactive way to show the court he or she is serious about not repeating the offense. Also called DIP, the intervention seminar is taken over the course of a weekend.
You check into whatever hotel is hosting it on Thursday evening and check out on Sunday afternoon. Limited to first-time offenders, the class teaches about traffic safety and OVI prevention. It offers assessments to students and refers those who need it for further assistance. There are special programs offered to minors.
The penalties that follow a high-test OVI conviction are harsh and expensive. Don’t attempt to defend yourself in this situation. You need the assistance of a good attorney.
Just because you were charged with high test OVI doesn’t mean you’re automatically going to jail or anything else. Your Youngstown OVI lawyer is well-versed in OVI law. Once he speaks with you and examines the evidence against you, he will know
what defense options will work in your case. He will be able to identify places in the chemical testing and arrest procedures where the police acted wrongly, and will use that information to get your charges reduced or even dismissed. He will also be able to get your driving privileges returned to you.
There are more than legal consequences to a high test OVI charge. There’s no way to keep something like this a secret, especially if you wrecked your car while you were drunk. Your neighbors and friends alike will have something to say, from a tease to a lecture. Your employment could be in jeopardy, especially if driving is part of your job description. You could even find your educational opportunities limited and your professional license revoked.
Operating a vehicle while intoxicated is no joking matter. The consequences are harsh and can be life-changing. If you are arrested for this charge, you need excellent representation.
Call (330) 625-9199 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.