Loudoun County Car Accident Leads to Charges for DUI, Hit and Run
The Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office arrested a Virginia man for drunk driving and fleeing the scene of an accident, according to an article by the Loudoun Times-Mirror.
On January 25th at approximately 7 p.m., sheriff’s deputies responded to reports of a hit-and-run car accident near North Sterling Boulevard and Route 7 in Sterling. The deputies arrived at the scene and searched for the vehicle that caused the accident.
A short time thereafter, the sheriff’s deputies located the Virginia man’s vehicle and conducted a traffic stop. During the traffic stop, the deputies detected intoxication from alcohol and took the Virginia man into custody.
As a result of this incident, local authorities charged the Virginia man with driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol and leaving the scene of an accident (hit and run). After posting an unsecured bond in the amount of $2,000, the Virginia man secured his release from the Loudoun County Adult Detention Center.
At this point, the Virginia man’s legal case is just beginning. It is difficult to estimate the exact nature of his eventual punishment. But it is possible to approximate. In order to understand what type of criminal penalties the Virginia man could face, it will be helpful to review several applicable statutes.
What are the Virginia Penalties for DUI?
The state-specific penalties for DUI appear under Code of Virginia Section 18.2-270. At an absolute minimum, Virginia law treats DUI as a Class 1 misdemeanor.
If convicted at this level, a DUI offender can face up to 12 months in jail and $2,500 in criminal fines. In most circumstances, first- or second-time DUI offenders will face Class 1 misdemeanor charges and the maximum penalties outlined above.
That being said, repeat DUI offenders — specifically, those who commit at least three DUI offenses — can face Class 6 felony charges. If convicted for a Class 6 felony, the offender can face a maximum of 60 months in prison and $2,500 in criminal fines.
On top of jail or prison time and hefty fines, DUI offenders also face license suspension under Code of Virginia Section 18.2-271. First-time offenders can have their driver’s license suspended for one year. Repeat offenders can have their driver’s license suspended for three years.
What are the Virginia Penalties for Hit & Run?
The state-specific penalties for hit and run appear under Code of Virginia Section 46.2-894. Hit and run accidents involving:
- Less than $1,000 in Damage — Are usually charged as Class 1 misdemeanors and punishable as detailed in the previous section;
- More than $1,000 in Damage — Are usually charged as Class 5 felonies and punishable by a maximum of 10 years in prison and $2,500 in criminal fines; or
- Injured or Dead People — Are usually charged as Class 5 felonies and punishable as described above.
Let Us Help You Today
If you need legal help with charges for DUI or hit and run in Virginia, it can be demonstrably valuable to contact a seasoned criminal defense attorney. The Leesburg drunk driving attorneys at Simms Showers LLP have proven legal experience in various matters of criminal defense, including DUI and hit and run. If you need legal help with criminal defense, contact us today for a free initial consultation.