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First OVI is typically a misdemeanor of the first degree under Ohio Revised Code § 4511.19, and occurs if someone operates any vehicle under the influence of alcohol, controlled substance or combination of alcohol and controlled substances, and their blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was over the legal limit of .08%.
The first OVI is the most common operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol offense in Ohio. Many first OVI offenders have never been in trouble before or charged with prior misdemeanors or felonies.
A first-time OVI, also known as driving under the influence, driving while intoxicated, DUI or DWI, conviction can cause many problems that will impact a person’s future. For example, a person charged with an OVI can receive several months of probation, community service, ignition interlock device installation, driver’s license suspension and/or increased automobile insurance rates, in addition to possible jail sentences and fines.
Although most misdemeanors are usually easily resolved with the payment of a fine or community service, most prosecutors in Ohio want to pursue at least the minimum statutory penalties and punishments for OVI offenses. Therefore, it is imperative to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney to represent your best interests in a first OVI case.
If you have been charged with a first Operating a Vehicle under the Influence of alcohol or drugs in Columbus, Ohio, contact the Joslyn Law Firm. Brian Joslyn of the Joslyn Law Firm will listen to the details of your particular case and discuss what you need to do to protect your driving privileges and fight the charges against you. Call the Joslyn Law Firm at (614) 444-1900 for a free consultation today.
Anyone convicted of a first OVI in Ohio will face a class five driver’s license suspension under Ohio Rev. Code § 4510.02. This means the court will impose a mandatory driver’s license suspension for a definite period ranging from six months to three years.
However, the court may allow limited driving privileges under Ohio Rev. Code § 4510.021 for occupational, educational or vocational purposes, in addition to attend court-ordered treatment or take a driver’s license exam. Further, the court may require an individual to complete a remedial driving course before their full driving privileges are reinstated.
A first OVI in Ohio is usually a misdemeanor of the first degree, but can be an increased charge, depending on whether the OVI resulted in the death or serious body injury to another person or property damage resulted from the offense. The penalties for a first misdemeanor OVI are:
Jail Time - A first OVI conviction provides for a maximum jail sentence of up to six months in jail. Further, for even the least serious OVI offense, a person who has been convicted is required to spend a mandatory 72 consecutive hours in jail (or three consecutive days). Additionally, a person who has a high BAC could be required to take a driver’s intervention program in addition to the three mandatory days in jail. If the individual refuses to attend the driver’s intervention program, the court may order up to six mandatory days in jail.
OVI Fine - The court is required to impose a fine not less than $375 and not more than $1,075.
Driver’s Intervention Program - Instead of mandatory jail time, the court may require an individual convicted of OVI to attend a certified driver’s intervention program. If an individual has a high BAC, they may be required to attend a three-day driver’s intervention program in addition to the mandatory jail sentence. The court may also require an individual to attend drug or alcohol treatment or education programs.
Ignition Interlock Device - The court has the discretion to require an individual to place an ignition interlock device on their automobile after a first OVI conviction.
If you have been arrested for a first OVI in Columbus, Ohio, contact the Joslyn Law Firm to discuss the facts of your particular situation. Brian Joslyn is an experienced Columbus OVI defense lawyer who will make every effort to help you avoid the most serious repercussions and consequences to your alleged offense.
Contact the Joslyn Law Firm at (614) 444-1900 for a consultation about your OVI charges in Franklin County, and the surrounding counties of Pickaway County, Madison County, Delaware County, Licking County and Fairfield County in Ohio.