Just as it is against the law to drive a car while drunk, it’s also illegal to operate a motorized boat while intoxicated. Nevertheless, many people operate a boat while under the influence during the summer months.
Below, our Minneapolis defense attorneys discuss the potential consequences of this crime.
What Does a BWI Involve?
A person may be charged with a Boating While Intoxicated (BWI) if one or both of the following are true:
- The boat operator is impaired by alcohol or drugs to an extent that the person does not “possess that clearness of intellect and that control … that they otherwise would have.”
- The boat operator has a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or greater.
Potential Consequences of a BWI
The potential consequences of a BWI are similar to that of a DWI. For offenses that occur within a ten-year period, these penalties may include:
- First Offense: Assuming the blood alcohol concentration is not twice the legal limit, the offense would be a misdemeanor that carries up to $1,000 in fines and/or up to 90 days in jail.
- Second Offense: A gross misdemeanor that carries up to $3,000 in fines and a minimum of 30 days jail to one year in jail.
- Third Offense: A gross misdemeanor that carries up to $3,000 in fines and a minimum of 90 days to one year in jail.
- Fourth Offense or more: A felony crime that carries up to $14,000 in fines and three to seven years in prison.
Defending Your Rights After a BWI
If you have been charged with a BWI, there are several strategies that an experienced defense attorney may take to dismiss your case, including:
- Accusations of defective testing equipment
- Denials that you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the arrest
- Proof that you were taking a controlled substance in accordance with a valid prescription
At Caplan & Tamburino Law Firm, P.A., our Minneapolis defense attorneys have extensive experience defending clients’ legal rights and protecting their futures. We’re here to help you, too.
Contact Caplan & Tamburino Law Firm, P.A. at (612) 444-5020 to schedule a free consultation.