If you already have three DUIs on your criminal record, you know the consequences can be detrimental. However, while you think you can handle them if law enforcement arrests you again, be careful. Under Colorado law, a fourth DUI conviction counts as a felony. A felony drunk driving charge can significantly impact your freedom and enjoyment of life. If you receive a fourth felony DUI conviction, jail time is mandatory. And your life and career could be adversely affected in numerous other ways.
The holidays are a time of year when you may increase your drinking and fall under the temptation to drive drunk again. Here are some tips for avoiding a felony DUI charge this holiday season.
Plan ahead with a designated driver
An effective way to avoid driving drunk is relying on a trustworthy person to drive you to and from holiday parties. This may be a close friend, family member or even an acquaintance. But you must be absolutely confident that this person will not take a sip of alcohol during the party so you can get home safely.
Find another mode of transportation
If you become intoxicated and do not have a sober driver, find another way home. Call a taxi, use your phone to request a ridesharing service or utilize public transportation. Many services even provide free or discounted trips during the holidays in an effort to prevent drunk driving. But even if you end up needing to pay for a ride home, it is preferable to the hefty fines and a jail sentence if the police catch you driving while under the influence.
Deciding to not drink and drive is certainly the most effective way to stop yourself from getting a felony conviction. If you know you will have no other way to get home or spend the night after a holiday party, commit yourself to not drinking alcohol. While this may be easier said than done sometimes, it is worth the effort. If you do want to drink, stay at home. After all, sitting by the fireplace with a drink in your hand can be a very pleasant way to pass a winter's evening.
Those who have been arrested for DUI should remember that there are defenses to the charge. They should speak with an experienced DUI defense attorney.