Delaware DUI Prosecution
Driving under the influence charges can be prosecuted in two different
ways in Delaware. The first form of prosecution is called per se law.
Per se law states that an individual was driving while being
intoxicated. Those with blood alcohol content percentages above the
legal level of 0.08 percent will be prosecuted. The prosecuting
attorney will only need to prove to the court that an individual was
intoxicated and his or her blood alcohol level was above the legal
Other prosecution requires the prosecuting attorney to prove to the
court that an individual was impaired while driving. He or she will
need to show evidence of this impairment, which can include breath
tests, physical appearance of the individual, driving patterns, and
blood alcohol content. At times even if an individual's blood alcohol
content was above the legal level, an individual may not be considered
Driving Under the Influence Basics
All drivers are to submit to an implied consent law that states that
any driver will take a chemical test upon request. Refusal to submit to
a blood, urine, or breath test will result in license suspension for
six months. Refusing to take a chemical test will also imply that the
individual is guilty, and the court will take note.
Delaware has a zero tolerance law for minors who drive while
intoxicated. All those under the age of twenty-one will submit to
testing. Those with blood alcohol content percentages on the scale will
be arrested, especially if the levels are at 0.02 percent. This zero
tolerance law give law enforcement the ability to arrest any minor who
is intoxicated, no matter the blood alcohol content percentage.
High blood alcohol content levels will have increased punishments in
Delaware. If an individual has a blood alcohol content of 0.15 percent
or greater, normally 0.20 percent, he or she will have enhanced
punishments. These can include added incarceration time, increased
fines, and longer time periods for driver's license suspension.
Delaware DUI Punishments
Punishments and convictions in Delaware are based on the number of
prior offenses. However if another individual was injured due to drunk
driving or a minor was in the motor vehicle at the time of the arrest,
the punishments will be greater, despite a first offense. A first-time
DUI offense can earn three months of driver's license suspension,
mandatory alcohol education program and treatment or assessment, and
the possibility of having an ignition interlock device installed.
A second DUI offense can earn a possible ignition interlock device
installed, driver's license suspension for one year, and alcohol
education and treatment or assessment. A third DUI offense can earn
alcohol education and treatment or assessment, a possibility of an
ignition interlock device, and eighteen months of driver's license
Each offense may also include community service, incarceration, and
fines that are determined by circumstance and prosecution.
Confiscated Motor Vehicles
Some punishments can include motor vehicle confiscation for a
particular time period or on a permanent basis. Those who are repeated
DUI offenders are subject to this punishment. The department of motor
vehicles or another law enforcement agency will seize the vehicle upon
conviction. Payment of fines and completion of jail sentencing can
allow a vehicle to be returned.