Make the Best Decision
For your Future and your Freedom
For your Future
and your Freedom

San Bernardino County DUI with Child Endangerment

Lawyers Helping Drivers Fight Criminal Charges

If you were arrested for driving under the influence with a child in the car, you might face increased penalties for a DUI conviction. They’ll likely include jail time, especially if this isn’t your first DUI. If you’re worried about the consequences of being convicted of DUI with child endangerment, you need legal support from a criminal defense lawyer who will fight for your rights.

At Patrick Silva, Attorneys at Law, we have spent years strategizing solid legal defenses for clients concerned about how criminal charges could affect their lives. We realize how stressful it is to be accused of driving under the influence and putting a child in danger. That’s why we encourage you to contact us for help fighting a California DUI charge.

What Happens If You’re Arrested for DUI with a Child in the Car?

If you had a child in the car during your DUI arrest in Southern California, you could get child endangerment charges in addition to a DUI charge. In this state, prosecutors have two ways to charge you.

One is to charge you with a DUI with a child endangerment enhancement. This means you will face penalties for your DUI charge, plus enhanced penalties for having a minor passenger in the car while drunk driving. The child endangerment sentence enhancement is typically only charged if the child in the motor vehicle is under the age of 14.

The other possibility is a DUI and a separate child endangerment charge. This can apply to a driver whose minor passenger is a child under the age of 18. While the state can charge you with both DUI with child endangerment and separate child endangerment charges, you can only be convicted of one. If you want a chance to dismiss both charges, call our law firm to talk to skilled criminal defense lawyers.

What Are Legal Defenses to DUI and Child Endangerment Charges?

Facing child endangerment and DUI charges is scary, but don’t lose hope. The prosecutors must prove certain elements, and we have the resources and experience necessary to stop them from doing so. Your legal defense will depend on the charges and the circumstances surrounding your DUI arrest.

If you’re charged with DUI with a sentencing enhancement for child endangerment, the prosecutors must prove two details. First, they must prove you were driving under the influence. Next, they must prove there was a child under the age of 14 in the car.

With this DUI charge, we will look for ways to show you were not drunk driving. This may involve disputing the results of your breath, blood, or urine test. We can also investigate whether the police officer had probable cause to pull you over. Finally, we can fight the accusation that a child under 14 was in the vehicle with you.

If you’re facing a DUI with separate child endangerment charges, the prosecutors will allege that you allowed the child to experience unjustifiable mental suffering by driving recklessly under the influence. They could argue that even if the child wasn’t injured, there was potential for them to suffer great bodily harm. You’re more likely to be charged this way if you have prior DUI offenses or a high blood alcohol content (BAC).

If this occurs, we can initiate a DUI investigation to determine if you were driving under the influence according to California law or if the police ignored your rights during the arrest. Contact us to discuss your legal options with a DUI attorney who can fight child endangerment and DUI charges.

Will DUI Child Endangerment Charges Lead to Jail Time?

A DUI charge with a sentencing enhancement for a child passenger is usually a misdemeanor unless the child was injured, in which case it could be a felony. Either way, expect mandatory jail time if convicted. Your punishment will include penalties for the DUI plus penalty enhancements for driving under the influence with a child in the car.

The DUI sentence enhancement depends on whether this is your first or fourth offense DUI. You’ll be sentenced to 48 hours in county jail for a first DUI, plus any jail time you get for the DUI itself. A second offense DUI could result in 10 days in jail, while a third DUI will result in 30 days in jail. If this is your fourth DUI in 10 years, your sentence enhancement will add 90 days of jail to your punishment.

If you’re convicted of a DUI and child endangerment separately, you’ll face penalties for the DUI, plus up to one year in county jail for a misdemeanor child endangerment charge. If charged with felony child endangerment, you could end up in a California state prison for up to six years. To avoid serious penalties, contact our California law firm for help fighting misdemeanor or felony charges.

How Can Our San Bernardino County Lawyers Help with DUI Cases?

At Patrick Silva, Attorneys at Law, we have years of experience helping valued clients fight serious charges. We understand the complexities of the DUI laws in Southern California and can use our knowledge of the California Vehicle Code to get charges dismissed or reduced. If you’re worried about being found guilty of drunk or drugged driving with a child in your car, we urge you to contact us.

We realize how distressing it is to be accused of putting a child in danger and facing jail time, and we believe you deserve to have someone on your side to defend you within the justice system. If you’re worried about going to jail over your charges, call us at 909-500-4819 to explain the situation and get legal advice from caring, trusted lawyers.