Do You Need a Lawyer for a First-Time DWUI Charge?

If you were charged with a DWUI in Wyoming, this may be your first experience with the criminal legal system, other than minor moving violations.

Many people who are charged with a first-time DWUI think they should just plead guilty, pay the fine, attend a DWUI class, and go about their business.

But before you decide how to proceed, you should consider all of the implications of pleading guilty to a DWUI charge, and the other potential consequences of a guilty plea or conviction.

The impact of a DWUI on your life can be substantial, and you should talk to an experienced DWUI defense attorney before you plead guilty. An attorney can explain your options, defend you against the charge, and help you explore options that could minimize the immediate and long-term impacts of a DWUI charge.

Penalties for a First-Time DWUI Conviction

If you have not had a prior DWUI conviction in Wyoming or any other state, or if your last DWUI charge was more than 10 years ago, you are considered a first-time DWUI offender.

Even though a DWUI charge is a misdemeanor, the penalties for a DWUI conviction are serious and can include a license suspension, fines, jail time, mandatory installation of an Ignition Interlock Device (IID), and a substance abuse assessment.

In addition, a Wyoming DWUI conviction will remain on your criminal record and is not eligible for expungement. A conviction can negatively impact your ability to find a job, your housing options, car insurance rates, and other aspects of your life.

Defending Against a First-Time DWUI Charge

Wyoming has some of the harshest DWUI laws in the country, and Wyoming prosecutors take DWUI charges seriously and will seek to impose the strictest penalties. But an experienced DWUI defense attorney has numerous strategies they can use to defend you against a DWUI charge.

Gillette, Wyoming DWUI defense attorney Christina L. Williams and her criminal defense team will begin by analyzing the circumstance of your arrest.

Police officers sometimes make errors during the course of a traffic stop that leads to a DWUI arrest. If the police made a mistake or did not have probable cause to initiate the traffic stop or suspect you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol, a criminal defense lawyer can challenge the stop and request that evidence of your alleged intoxication be thrown out. This, in turn, makes it significantly more difficult for the prosecutor to secure a conviction which can lead to having the case against you dismissed, or negotiating a favorable plea deal.

An Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney Can Defend You Against a Wyoming DWUI Charge

In addition to knowing the law surrounding DWUI charges, an experienced DWUI defense attorney knows the local courts and prosecutors. This local knowledge can be essential to a successful DWUI defense and will give you the best chance of navigating the legal process and minimizing the negative impacts of a DWUI charge or conviction.

Just Criminal Law Protects YOUR One Shot at Justice

During your personalized case review and strategy session, a member of our criminal defense team will ask questions to learn about the circumstance of your arrest and the situation that led to your being charged with a crime.

Our team will then conduct an independent investigation into the facts and circumstances that led to your arrest. We will analyze the evidence, work with forensic experts, research the law that applies to your case, and negotiate with the prosecutor to try to resolve your case on favorable terms.

Sometimes vindication at trial is the only acceptable result. If this is the case, you will be represented by one of our former prosecutors who will vigorously defend your rights, exploit mistakes made by the police, and take advantage of any loopholes or inconsistencies to provide you with the best possible defense.

If you have been charged with a DWUI in Wyoming, criminal defense attorney Christina L. Williams and her criminal defense team are here to help.

From our offices in Gillette, Wyoming, we defend people throughout eastern Wyoming and western South Dakota.

Wherever your case takes you, our team will be there when you need us. Wyoming has 9 district courts, 23 circuit courts, and many other municipal courts. Our lawyers will make sure they are familiar with the judge assigned to your case, and that they know the local rules and procedures that apply in your case. Learn more about the cases we handle and the communities we serve, get answers to Frequently Asked Questions, and contact us today to schedule your personalized case review and strategy session.

DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this article is offered for educational purposes only. This information is not offered as legal advice. A person accused of a crime should always consult with an attorney before making decisions that have legal consequences.