If you’ve been arrested for DWI in St. Louis, it probably already feels like you’ve already been convicted. However, hiring an effective St. Louis DWI lawyer can mean the difference in getting reduced charges, a dismissal, or preserving your ability to drive. St Louis DWI Lawyer Brian J. Cooke has represented numerous individuals for DWI, Felony DWI, DWI Manslaughter, DWI Drugs, and DWI with serious physical injury. Brian is a member of the National College of DWI Defense, was named top 10 in Client Satisfaction for DWI law/DUI cases in Missouri, has a perfect 10 rating on Avvo.com, and was named a "Rising Star" by Superlawyers magazine.
Our St. Louis DWI lawyer is here to answer any questions you may have about Missouri DWI laws and to help you navigate the Missouri criminal justice process. Learn more about your rights and options when facing DWI charges in St. Louis County, St. Louis City, St. Charles County, or Jefferson County. Call 314-526-3779 or submit an online request for your free, confidential DWI consultation.
Under RSMo § 577.010 RSMo, A person commits the offense of driving while intoxicated if he or she operates a vehicle in an intoxicated condition. The legal limit for alcohol for adults 21 and over is .08 percent. The legal limit for Juveniles and Adults under 21 is .02 percent. The legal limit for Commercial drivers with a CDL is .04 percent.
- Missouri law defines “intoxicated condition” as being under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or a combination of alcohol and drugs.
- A “Motor Vehicle” is defined as “a self-propelled mechanical device designed to carry a person or persons, excluding vessels or aircraft.”
- Operating a motor vehicle is defined as “physically driving or being in actual physical control of a motor vehicle”. Actual physical control of a motor vehicle is construed as existing or present bodily restraint, directing influence, domination, or regulation of a vehicle, and it exists even where the vehicle is motionless as long as the person is keeping the vehicle in restraint or is in a position to regulate its movements and the automobile is running. Taylor v. McNeill, 714 S.W.2d 947, 948 (Mo.App.1986). Furthermore, a finding of actual physical control is not defeated by the fact that the driver is asleep. Id.
Drunk driving in St. Louis, MO is usually a misdemeanor and can result in jail time, probation, suspension of driving privileges, inability to obtain a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License), and other serious consequences. However, Missouri law allows the prosecuting attorney to enhance the charge based on prior DWI convictions.
- 1st Offense DWI in Missouri : is a class B misdemeanor with a range of punishment of up to 6 months in jail and a fine of $1,000 or both.
- 2nd Offense DWI in Missouri (Prior Offender): is a class A misdemeanor with a range of punishment of up to 1 year in jail and a fine of up to $2,000 or both. A prior offender must serve 10 days imprisonment and may not receive a suspended imposition of sentence.
- 3rd Offense DWI in Missouri (Persistent Offender): is a class E felony with a range of punishment of up to 4 years in prison and a fine of $10,000 or both. A persistent offender must serve a minimum of 30 days in jail and cannot receive a suspended imposition of sentence.
- 4th Offense DWI in Missouri (Aggravated Offender): is a class D felony with a range of punishment of up to 7 years in prison and a fine of $10,000 or both. An aggravated offender must serve 60 days in jail and is not eligible for a suspended imposition of sentence.
- 5th Offense DWI in Missouri (Chronic Offender): is a class C felony with a range of punishment of three to ten years in prison. A chronic offender is not eligible for probation or parole until he or she has served a minimum of two years of imprisonment.
- 6th Offense DWI in Missouri (Habitual Offender): is a class B felony with a range of punishment of 5 to 15 years in prison. A habitual offender is not eligible for probation or parole until he or she has served a minimum of two years imprisonment.
We approach every Missouri DWI case with the goal of getting the best outcome possible for our client. In some cases, this can mean negotiating the DWI down to a lesser charge. In other cases, this can mean fighting the case at trial. If you or a loved one has been charged with DWI in St. Louis, please do not hesitate to contact us at 314-526-3779 for a free consultation so we can discuss your options.