The penalties for a DUI in Alabama have increased drastically over recent years. The sentencing range, and whether or not the offense was a misdemeanor or even a felony, is dependent on a number of factors including any previous DUI convictions.
An initial Alabama DUI conviction is a misdemeanor offense. Upon conviction, the defendant could possibly be given a sentence as high as 365 days within the county jail along with a fine between $600 and $2,100 dollars. The DUI offender will also be ordered to complete a court ordered and approved drug and alcohol program and will most definitely have their driver's license suspended for 90 days.
The "look-back" period in Alabama for a DUI conviction is 5 years. This means that if an individual has at least one previous DUI, and the day that they are found guilty of the 2nd DUI is greater than five years after the date of first DUI conviction, they shall be sentenced within the range of punishment as being a first offender. However, if the second DUI is within five years of that first conviction, the offender will be charged as a second-time offender.
A 2nd DUI within five years of the first is a misdemeanor which has a jail term of not less than 5 days and up to One year within the county jail. A court may allow an offender to complete 30 days of community service instead of the mandated five days jail time. On a second conviction, the offender will be fined between $1,100 and $5,100 dollars, their driver license will be suspended for 12 months, and he or she will be required to attend a court-ordered treatment program.
A third DUI conviction within a person's lifetime is also a misdemeanor. Upon conviction, the offender shall be sentenced to at least 60 days and no greater than 12 months within the county jail. He or she is going to be fined between $2,100 and $10,100 dollars, have his / her license suspended for 3 years and is going to be required to finish a court-ordered alcohol treatment program.
Class "C" Felony
Any fourth or subsequent DUI offense is classified as a Class C Felony. A person convicted of Felony DUI in Alabama will be sentenced to no less than 1 year and 1 day and no greater than Ten years imprisonment. He or she will be fined between $4,100 and $10,100 dollars, and have their Alabama license suspended for five years. The accused will be required to attend a court-approved substance abuse program.
An additional penalty for all offenders includes the installation of an ignition interlock device, which is a breath-testing machine attached to the steering wheel of your car that prevents it from being started or driven if you have any measurable quantity of alcohol in your body.