In Fresno and across the State of California, there are a few different ways that an individual can end up being charged with a felony DUI. 

Fresno DUI Causing Injury

The first is where there is a DUI with injury.   The Fresno DA will most likely charge a felony where the driver is driving under the influence, a collision results, and another person suffers an injury.  This section is codified within the California Vehicle Code in section 23153, subsection (a) and (b). 

This section, with the exception of the injury requirement, mirrors the normal simple DUI offense.  One thing that most people don’t realize, is that a DUI with injury requires the driver to be the cause of the injury.  For instance, if a person high on PCP jumps out in front of your car on a busy highway and you happen to be under the influence, 624824_restrained.jpgyou still are not the cause of the injury unless the fact that you were under the influence prevented you from stopping in time and a reasonable driver in the same circumstances could have stopped without the alcohol in their system.   So, if you’re not at fault in the accident, the felony DUI with injury cannot stand.

Felony DUI Based Upon Prior Convictions

Another way that a driver can be charged with a felony DUI in Fresno, is if they have suffered three prior convictions for driving under the influence within the past 10 years (Veh. Code § 23540).   The fourth offense automatically becomes a felony.  However, there are defenses to this as well.  One thing that a veteran Fresno DUI Attorney should look for is whether there are procedural errors in the prior cases.  At the Mitchell Law Group, we pull the records of the prior convictions and we check to see if mistakes were made.  If there were, well that’s why you hired us, right, you benefit.  If only one prior conviction can be found to be procedurally insufficient, the charge is reduced to a misdemeanor.  In addition, out of state prior DUI convictions often do not meet the elements of the California statute and cannot be charged as a prior DUI.   Again, these issues are the reason why you need a knowledgeable Fresno DUI Defense Attorney on your side.

What some people don’t realize, however, is that any prior Fresno Felony DUI charge in the last 10 years that resulted in a conviction, can result in any DUI, even a simple non-injury driving under the influence charge, being charged as a felony. 

Fresno DUI Lawyer Defending Your Felony DUI Charge

 These serious and often complex issues necessitate the hiring of a competent Fresno DUI lawyer to assist you in defending your case.  At the Mitchell Law Group, we handle these types of cases day in and day out.  We know what we’re doing period!!  You are not going to be facing a situation where your lawyer is sputtering out in court because he’s really a real estate attorney handling your Fresno Felony DUI case.   Call the Mitchell Law Group today to schedule your free initial consultation with a real attorney, not a paralegal, you can reach us at (559) 222-2424 or via email through our contact form.