Baltimore Felony DUI Lawyer
Though it is uncommon, a DUI in Baltimore can be a felony offense, but it’s extremely rare. In Baltimore, Maryland, felony DUIs involve serious bodily injury or death. If an individual is involved in a traffic accident and is charged with a DUI and that accident results in serious injury or death, the DUI is charged as a vehicular assault or a vehicular manslaughter case. In the event of a DUI felony case in Baltimore, an experienced felony DUI attorney in Baltimore can greatly assist a person by tailoring a defense to their individual case.
Felony DUI Cases vs. Regular DUI Cases
A regular DUI begins in district court which is the lower level court in Baltimore. The district court is for misdemeanors, small claims, or generally petty criminal offenses. Felony DUIs begin in the circuit court which is significantly more serious. This is the court that hears felonies and high dollar amount civil cases. Due to the nature of the criminal allegations, it is imperative to hire an aggressive Baltimore felony DUI lawyer with experience in the local courts. An attorney experienced in the local court system will know the judges, officers, and prosecutors involved and therefore will be able to better navigate the courtroom to reach the best possible outcome.
Why Legal Representation Matters
There is more at risk for a person implicated in a felony case over a misdemeanor case. When an individual is convicted of vehicular assault or vehicular manslaughter, it is almost unheard of that there is not active incarceration. Having an experienced and knowledgeable Baltimore felony DUI lawyer is extraordinarily important when a person’s liberty or jail time is on the line because they will understand the complexities of the case and how these complicated angles pertain to their clients unique situation. This will allow for more maneuverability in the courtroom and optimize an individual’s chance to lessen the negative impact of the charges in their daily life.
In terms of the defense, the elements of a felony case are exactly the same as the elements of a normal DUI; with the addition that the state must show the driving resulted in significant bodily injury or death. But the underlying elements, the driving and the impairment, are exactly the same as in a misdemeanor DUI case.
First Steps for an Attorney in a DUI Felony Case
The first thing an experienced Baltimore DUI felony attorney will do in any case is talk to the client. A dedicated attorney will ask the client to give their version of events so that they can then compare their version of events to the information the lawyer receives from the State Attorney’s Office when he demands the discovery. The DUI attorney will then review the discovery packet and interview any witnesses. Following examination of the discovery packet and witness interviews, a knowledgeable attorney will gather any other evidence they believe is required to get an acquittal for their client; and then the lawyer will prepare the case for trial. A lawyer who has handled these cases before will know they should prepare all of their witnesses, experts, and anything else that they need to get acquittal.