If an individual is charged with a second or subsequent DUI, they should know that the minimum jail sentence required can be satisfied by jail or treatment in a residential facility. For example, if you are charged with a third DUI within ten years there is a mandatory thirty day jail requirement as part of your sentence. However, if the court approves, all or part of this sentence may be served in a residential alcoholism treatment program.
There are two benefits to this which are obvious. First, you may not have to go to jail. Second, you will receive the benefit of alcohol treatment which may very well be necessary if you are on your second or third DUI. In addition, the State Attorney’s Office may even seek a jail sentence which exceeds the minimum required by law in a case with multiple past DUI’s. Participation in a residential treatment program shows the court that you are serious about resolving the underlying problem that led to your arrest in the first place. This, in turn, may persuade the judge in your case that more jail is unnecessary and would serve no useful purpose as a sentence, while the treatment program would. Obviously you will have to bear the expense of the program, but it is worth it.
In addition, these types of programs can be useful in the case of violations of probation. For example, if the judge in your violation of probation case has set forth an offer which involves jail, the alternative of a residential treatment program could be proposed. If accepted by the court, it would serve as a substitute for jail.
It is imperative that you speak to our experienced Pasco County criminal defense attorneys when faced with a DUI charge that involves jail. Our attorney’s will know which options can be pursued with individual judges and prevent imposition a lengthy jail sentence.