8. What is a sentence "enhancement"?

Most states increase the punishment in drunk driving cases if certain facts exist. The most common of these is an earlier conviction for the same or a similar offense—usually within five or seven years of the current offense. Other commonly encountered enhancements (which must usually be alleged in the complaint) include:

(1) A child was in the car at the time.
(2) The blood-alcohol concentration was over .15%.
(3) The defendant refused to submit to a chemical test.
(4) There was property damage or injury.

In most states, the existence of any personal injury caused by drunk driving elevates the offense to a felony. A death can trigger manslaughter or even, in a few states, second degree murder charges.

-Question 1
-Question 2
-Question 3
-Question 4
-Question 5
-Question 6
-Question 7
-Question 8
-Question 9
-Question 10
-Question 11
-Question 12
-Question 13

-Chart 1
-Chart 2
-Chart 3

  © 2003 James Franzen. All Rights Reserved.