Repeat DUI offenses in Mississippi and the escalating consequences

On Behalf of | Jan 9, 2024 | Firm News

When it comes to driving under the influence (DUI), Mississippi law does not tread lightly, especially with repeat offenders. The penalties for DUI convictions become significantly more severe with each later offense.

First offense vs. repeat offenses

A first-time DUI in Mississippi is a misdemeanor, with penalties that may include up to 48 hours in jail, fines ranging from $250 to $1,000, and a 90-day driver’s license suspension.

The law takes a harsher stance on a second DUI offense within five years. It’s still classified as a misdemeanor, but the penalties jump to five days to one year in jail, $600 to $1,500 in fines, and a two-year driver’s license suspension.

A third DUI offense within five years is a felony in Mississippi. The consequences include one to five years in a state penitentiary, fines between $2,000 and $5,000, and a three-year driver’s license suspension.

For a fourth and subsequent DUI, the felony offense leads to up to $10,000 in fines and 10 years in prison on conviction. In addition, the convicted driver’s license is suspended for the full period of their sentence.

Ignition interlock device requirements

In addition to the fines and imprisonment, a court may also order rivers convicted of DUI to install an ignition interlock device (IID) on a vehicle they own. The device prevents the vehicle from starting if it detects alcohol in the driver’s breath.

On a second DUI offense, the IID installation is a possible requirement upon reinstatement of the driver’s license. For a third DUI offense, it’s a mandatory requirement upon reinstatement of driving privileges for at least three years.

However, on a fourth or subsequent offense, the person must maintain an IID in their vehicle for 10 years before their license is fully reinstated.

The message from Mississippi’s DUI laws is clear: the more DUI offenses you commit, the higher the stakes become. With escalating penalties, including the potential for felony charges, it is crucial for those facing repeat DUI charges to seek legal guidance.

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