St. George Federal DUI Lawyer
Fighting Federal Driving Under the Influence Charges
Driving under the influence is a serious violation with costly consequences. The offense is not just a state crime. Depending on where someone drove while impaired, it might be a federal offense. A regular DUI occurs when a person operates a vehicle while intoxicated on state roads. In contrast, a federal DUI happens when an individual is drunk driving on federal property, such as national parks or monuments.
I am Attorney Edward D. Flint, with over 30 years of legal experience. As a federal DUI lawyer in St. George, I have a wealth of insight to offer my clients. I deliver personalized attention and take the time to listen to my clients' stories. By understanding the alleged incident from their perspective, I can craft tailored defense strategies to seek favorable outcomes. I work diligently to protect my clients' rights and futures and have a track record of results.
To schedule a free consultation with an experienced St. George federal DUI attorney, please call (435) 740-8460 or submit an online contact form today.
How Is a Federal DUI Different from a State DUI?
When it comes to DUIs, there is a distinction between state and federal offenses. Generally, DUIs occurring on highways are considered state crimes, but if it happens on property owned by the federal government, the case enters federal jurisdiction.
Federal property includes the following:
- National monuments
- Federal courthouses
- National parks
- National forests
- Post offices
- Military bases
In cases where an offense is committed on federal government land, it will be heard in a federal court, even if the Assimilative Crimes Act applies.
What Is a Federal DUI?
Essentially, a federal DUI is similar to a state DUI. It's an offense occurring when someone operates a vehicle while under the influence. As noted before, the primary difference between state and federal DUIs is where the violation occurred.
The location also affects what laws come into play:
- 36 C.R.F. § 4.23: If the DUI happened at a national park or forest, the driver could be prosecuted under 36 C.R.F. § 4.23. The law states that it is illegal for a person to operate a vehicle while under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol to the point that they cannot safely control their car. An offense also occurs if someone drives with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 or higher.
- 18 U.S.C. § 13: For DUIs happening on other types of federal property, the Assimilative Crimes Act kicks in. The Act provides that the state's laws are recognized when prohibited conduct occurs on federal land but the federal government does not have a specific law concerning the behavior. This means that Utah's DUI law will apply. Utah Code § 41-6a-502 makes it unlawful to operate a vehicle with a BAC of 0.05 or more or while under the influence of a substance that impairs safe driving.
- Uniform Code of Military Justice: The provisions of the UCMJ will apply when a DUI occurs on a military base.
What Are the Penalties for a Federal DUI?
The potential conviction penalties for a federal DUI will depend on the law applying to the case.
If the offense was committed in a national forest or park, the punishments include up to six months of incarceration and/or a fine.
Violations prosecuted under the Assimilative Crimes Act are subject to punishments similar to those of the state where the crime happened. For instance, a DUI in Utah is a class B misdemeanor carrying up to six months in jail, a fine of up to $1,000 and/or driver's license suspension.
The UCMJ also covers DUIs and imposes confinement, fines, and other sanctions for a DUI conviction.
What Should You Do If Arrested for a Federal DUI?
If you have been arrested for a federal DUI in St. George, seek legal advice immediately. An experienced criminal defense attorney who knows the ins and outs of fighting charges in federal court can review your case and legal options.
Discuss your case with me by contacting my firm at (435) 740-8460.
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