DUI and Child Endangerment

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DUI and Child Endangerment

DUI and Child Endangerment

DUI and Child Endangerment:  A DUI with a child in the car (defined by the law as anyone under the age of 14) is an enhancement to DUI that prosecutors of Orange County DUI cases are aggressive about, often adding parenting classes and potential jail time. Because of the tough penalties, it is recommended that an Orange County DUI lawyer help you.

Almost every state has a law known as a DUI Child Endangerment Law. In California, the enhancement for DUI with a child is found in Vehicle Code section 23573. That code section states as follows:

“23572. (a) If any person is convicted of a violation of Section 23152 and a minor under 14 years of age was a passenger in the vehicle at the time of the offense, the court shall impose the following penalties in addition to any other penalty prescribed:

(1) If the person is convicted of a violation of Section 23152 punishable under Section 23536, the punishment shall be enhanced by an imprisonment of 48 continuous hours in the county jail, whether or not probation is granted, no part of which shall be stayed.

(2) If a person is convicted of a violation of Section 23152 punishable under Section 23540, the punishment shall be enhanced by an imprisonment of 10 days in the county jail, whether or not probation is granted, no part of which may be stayed.

(3) If a person is convicted of a violation of Section 23152 punishable under Section 23546, the punishment shall be enhanced by an imprisonment of 30 days in the county jail, whether or not probation is granted, no part of which may be stayed.

(4) If a person is convicted of a violation of Section 23152 which is punished as a misdemeanor under Section 23550, the punishment shall be enhanced by an imprisonment of 90 days in the county jail, whether or not probation is granted, no part of which may be stayed.

(b) The driving of a vehicle in which a minor under 14 years of age was a passenger shall be pled and proven.

(c) No punishment enhancement shall be imposed pursuant to this section if the person is also convicted of a violation of Section 273a of the Penal Code arising out of the same facts and incident.”

The intent of this law is to protect children. California is one of the 46 states that have these additional penalties. The law also mentions Penal Code section 273a, which is the State’s Child Endangerment law, which also carries up to one year in jail. As a result, the prosecution and courts can have this charge lead to jail time for those arrested for DUI with children in their vehicle.

Hiring a DUI specialist in Orange County will be able to give you the best chance to win or minimize impact in your case with a DUI and Child Endangerment. We have experience with these charges.

Child endangerment laws are taken very seriously. In addition to the extra punishment, there is typically a protective order entered in the beginning of the case, removing the parent from the children until the court is satisfied that the children are not in danger can be traumatizing for both the children and the parent accused.

Our Orange County DUI Lawyers can help you fight a DUI and Child Endangerment case. If not acquitted of the charges, there is a good chance that you can have the sentence reduced, deferred, or otherwise commuted, so that you are not facing the loss of your children and jail time. Contact our firm for help with these charges.

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