What constitutes a felony DUI in New Mexico?
  1. Home
  2.  » 
  3. Criminal Law
  4.  » What constitutes a felony DUI in New Mexico?

What constitutes a felony DUI in New Mexico?

On Behalf of | Jun 11, 2024 | Criminal Law

Driving under the influence is a serious crime in New Mexico. The state has strict laws to prevent drunk driving and protect public safety.

A DUI can escalate to a felony under specific circumstances. Understanding these conditions helps individuals stay informed and avoid severe legal consequences.

Aggravating factors for a New Mexico DUI

A New Mexico DUI becomes a felony when certain aggravating factors are present. One primary factor is repeat offenses. A third or subsequent DUI offense results in a felony charge. The state takes repeat offenses seriously because they indicate a pattern of dangerous behavior. Penalties for a felony DUI include longer jail time, hefty fines and extended license revocation periods.

Another condition that elevates a DUI to a felony is causing bodily harm or death. If a person drives under the influence and causes an accident resulting in injury or death, they face felony charges. This includes both other drivers and passengers. The legal system imposes harsher penalties in these cases to emphasize the severity of the crime and deter others from similar actions.

Other grounds for a felony DUI charge

Child endangerment also leads to a felony DUI charge. If an individual drives under the influence with a child under the age of 13 in the vehicle, the offense becomes a felony. New Mexico law aims to protect children from the risks associated with impaired driving. The presence of a minor in the car signifies a greater level of responsibility, and endangering a child is considered a grave offense.

Additionally, a DUI charge becomes a felony if the driver has a revoked or suspended license from a previous DUI conviction. This situation indicates a disregard for the law and repeated unsafe behavior. The state enforces stricter penalties to prevent such individuals from continually endangering others on the road.

New Mexico treats DUI offenses with utmost seriousness, especially when there are aggravating factors. Knowing these conditions can help individuals make more responsible decisions and understand the consequences of impaired driving.