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Charles H. Williams,
Attorney and Counselor
at Law, P.S.
707 South Snoqualmie
Suite 4A
Seattle, WA 98108

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Washington man faces DUI charge after car accident

What types of penalties do I face if I am convicted of a DUI? What if I have been involved in a car accident in which others were injured and I had a BAC level that was greater than the state limit? What penalties do I face if I have been charged with vehicular assault or vehicular homicide? A Washington man may be asking these and other similar questions after recently being involved in a car accident and faces DUI charges.

Washington State Police say that a Kettle Falls man has been charged with a driving under the influence offense after an incident that resulted in two individuals being injured. Police say that while driving the pickup, the Washington man drove into the wrong lane and crashed into another pickup truck. Police say that the Washington man then went off the road and struck a culvert, while the other pickup truck went into a ditch. The Washington man and the driver of the other pickup both were transported to hospitals. Police believe that the Washington man was under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the incident.

In order to be convicted of a DUI offense, the government must show that the defendant was operating a motor vehicle in public while under the influence of alcohol or a drug (whether or not the drug was prescribed by a doctor). If convicted of a DUI in Washington, the defendant's penalty may be determined based on his or her number of previous offenses and the nature of those offenses. The defendant may face prison time, fines, installation of an ignition interlock system, suspension or revocation of the defendant's driver's license and a permanent criminal record.

A person accused of a DUI offense should understand his or her rights and the possible penalties they face. It is important to remember that all defendants deserve a fair trial and are presumed innocent unless proven guilty. Regardless of the details, a person charged with a DUI must take all possible steps to build a strong defense, in hopes of at least minimizing the potential consequences of a conviction.

Source: The Spokesman-Review, "Suspected DUI crash in Stevens County injures two," Jennifer Pignolet, Feb. 26, 2013

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