If you are arrested for drunk driving in Vista, you won’t necessarily be convicted of driving under the influence. In fact, even if your DUI lawyer can’t help you beat the charges completely, he may at least be able to have the charges reduced. One of the most common ways this is achieved is through plea bargaining down to a wet reckless charge. But a lot of people have never heard of this crime and ask “what’s the difference between a wet reckless vs. DUI charge?”
Wet Reckless Vs. DUI
So what, exactly, is a wet reckless charge and how is it different from a DUI? Well, when you compare the penalties in a wet reckless vs. DUI, you’ll see the penalties are a little less serious. To put it simply, a wet reckless conviction is essentially a less serious version of driving under the influence charges.
Why Wet Reckless Vs. DUI Charges?
Wet reckless charges are used as a plea bargain between the prosecution and your DUI attorney in those cases in which someone is driving with a low blood alcohol concentration, sometimes exceeding .08%. Essentially, a wet reckless simply means that you were driving recklessly by using alcohol or another other mind-altering substances. Interestingly, you cannot be arrested for a wet reckless. The officer can only arrest you if she believes you were operating a vehicle under the influence and, thus, qualify for a DUI.
What are the Benefits of Wet Reckless Vs. DUI Charge?
Wet reckless charges offer you a number of benefits over drunk driving charges. For one, the maximum sentence for a wet reckless charge is only 90 days in jail, so even if they throw the book at you, it’s still a shorter sentence than the six month maximum of a first time DUI. Next, the probation on a wet reckless is three years versus the standard five years for a DUI. It does carry a much smaller fine as well.
How a Wet Reckless Will Affect Your License
Perhaps most importantly though, a wet reckless will not result in a mandatory license suspension. You will still be required to attend a DMV hearing and may be subject to a suspended license based on the outcome of that hearing, but the DMV will not impose another suspension based upon a conviction for a wet reckless.
The Downsides of a Wet Reckless Are the Same as a DUI
A wet reckless is a priorable offense though, meaning that a second DUI arrest within 10 years will trigger the wet reckless being treated as a previous DUI conviction. The DUI course for a wet reckless is also the same as that of a DUI.
If you are charged with a DUI, the right drunk driving attorney may be able to help you get the charge reduced to a wet reckless. Please call Peter M. Liss at (760) 643-4050 to schedule a free initial consultation to discuss your case.
Creative Commons Image by Thomas Quine