DUI with minor passenger in south carolina

South Carolina actively wants to keep drivers and their passengers safe on the road at all times. It’s why the state has such strict DUI punishments on the books. If you’re caught driving under the influence, you can expect the state to push hard for high fines, license suspensions, and other similar punishments. But if you’re caught driving under the influence with a minor passenger in your vehicle, the severity of the charges against you will be worse. While working with a South Carolina DUI defense attorney is a good idea, it’s still helpful to know what’s at risk. 

You’ll Face DUI Charges

If you’re caught driving under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance, you’ll likely face DUI charges. Police officers will be able to perform a breath test, blood test, or urine test to verify your blood alcohol content (BAC) or to test for the presence of other drugs in your system. If you prefer, you can request that the test be performed by an independent medical provider or testing facility. 

You can also refuse to be tested, but doing so could work against you. Refusing the test could be used as a way to show that you knew you were guilty and were intentionally trying to hide the fact from law enforcement at your arrest.

The State Can Charge You With Child Endangerment

The DUI charges are severe enough, but if you have a minor passenger in the vehicle at the time of your arrest, the charges will be more severe. You’ll not only have to deal with the normal DUI charge, but you’ll also likely face child endangerment charges. 

This is because you’re behaving recklessly and are considered by law enforcement to be endangering the child riding in your vehicle. This charge carries with it some fairly hefty penalties including the following:

  • Driver’s license suspension for at least 60 days
  • Additional jail time of no more than one-half of the DUI charge’s sentence
  • Additional fines of no more than one-half of the DUI’s fine

If you’re thinking of drinking and plan on driving with a minor in the vehicle, you may want to think again. Consider calling a taxi or a ride-share car and pick your car up the next day.

Good Representation Can Help

If you are charged with DUI and child endangerment, hiring an experienced South Carolina DUI defense attorney is an absolute must. They’ll be able to review your case and represent your interests to the court in a way that may help you reduce the severity of the charges against you. Here are a few reasons why you should work with an attorney immediately:

  • Roadside screenings aren’t always accurate: If you underwent a breath test and tested at or above the legal limit, the police must show that the device was properly maintained and calibrated. Attorneys know what to look for and can request the appropriate documentation to review the maintenance history prior to your test.
  • They’ve represented cases like yours: The State likes to punish drivers convicted with driving under the influence harshly. Attorneys have represented cases like yours and have a better chance of convincing the court to make your punishment less severe.
  • They can give you advice: Attorneys know the ins and outs of the law and can give you the advice you need to help you navigate the process with confidence.

Schedule a Consultation Today

If you’ve been charged with a DUI with a minor passenger in your car, don’t try to represent yourself. Work with the experienced South Carolina DUI defense attorneys at Truslow & Truslow. Contact us to schedule a free consultation.