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 in Vista 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.
So what, exactly, is a wet reckless charge and how is it different from a DUI? Well, it’s essentially a less serious version of driving under the influence charges. A wet reckless is used as a plea bargain between the prosecution and your Vista 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 some 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.
Wet reckless charges offer you and your Vista drunk driving defense lawyer 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, though typically the DUI course is the same length. It is a priorable offense in that a second DUI arrest within 10 years will trigger the wet reckless being treated as a prior. 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.
If you are charged with a DUI, the right Vista 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