And if that’s not lawyer-speak then I don’t know what is! But it’s true nonetheless. Aggravated DWI in New York is codified in VTL Sec. 1192.2-a, and within that section are two subsections, (a) and (b).
VTL 1192-2-a(a) or per se Aggravated DWI, establishes a separate offense for driving with a BAC of .18 or higher. A violation of 1192.2-a(a), in and of itself, is still a misdemeanor level offense, although the sanctions and penalties for a conviction are more severe than for a “straight’ DWI; but it is NOT a felony. (However, if you have at least one prior DWI conviction within the past 10 years you could be charged with a felony, regardless of whether this BAC rises to an aggravated level or not.)
On the other hand, a violation of VTL 1192.2-a(b) IS a felony straight out of the gate. 1192.2-a(b) makes it an automatic felony to commit the offense of DWI, DWAI or combined influence DWI while a child younger than 16 years of age is in the vehicle. This is more commonly known as “Leandra’s Law” in honor of Leandra Rosado, an 11 year old girl who was tragically killed in drunk driving accident in New York City in 2009.
A conviction of either one of these offenses can pretty much ruin your day, year, and possibly life. So if you find yourself on the short end of an Aggravated DWI arrest, you need DWI defense attorneys experienced in defending these very serious DWI charges; you need Catalano & Carpenter LLP. Call us today to at (845) 454-1919 schedule a free DWI consultation.
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