The old cliché is definitely losing its legs. Contrary to popular opinion, not everything that happens in Las Vegas is destined to remain safely within the city limits. This is particularly true for anyone who has been caught driving under the influence.
As many tourists have learned to their dismay, there is no running away from a Vegas DUI. Wherever you go after leaving town, the infraction will be hot on your trail, and when it succeeds in catching up, you’ll have to face the music. Naturally, the further away from Vegas you live, the harder the problem will be to address.
Las Vegas takes these charges seriously, so whatever else you may consider, don’t try to fight a DUI infraction on your own. The law firm of Gregory & Waldo has experience in mounting defense for out-of-town Vegas tourists, and we can do the same for you.
The Sin City Reputation
Visitors to Las Vegas often believe that they are entering a giant playground free of consequences for any wrongdoing. For this mistaken impression, the city itself must take some of the blame. After all, travel commercials for decades have sold it in just that way.
Nevertheless, while the notion may have done wonders for the tourism industry, it has also left vacationers with an unfortunate misconception. As the criminal defense attorneys at Gregory & Waldo know full well, when it comes to breaking the law, Las Vegas will crack down just as hard if not harder than will any other city.
DUI Offenses in Las Vegas
In Nevada, the crime of DUI can apply to anyone for whom one or more of three conditions apply. These include:
- Driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol.
- Driving with a blood alcohol content, or BAC, of at least 0.08.
- Driving with higher-than-legal blood levels of over-the-counter or prescription drugs.
- Any combination of the above.
If Las Vegas law enforcement has caught you driving under the influence within the city limits, the charges will range in severity from misdemeanor to felony depending on whether you have faced these charges before. For example:
- A first offense in Nevada is normally a misdemeanor, but while this may sound insignificant, the punishment can be severe.
- A second offensein Nevada within a seven-year period is also a misdemeanor, but it is one for which the penalties are far more onerous.
- A third offense in Nevada within a seven-year period counts as a Category B felony. This is true regardless of whether any third parties should have happened to suffer injury or death as a result. A conviction could subject you to a lengthy prison sentence along with fines that could rise as high as $5,000.
A conviction for any of the above will remain on your record unsealed for a full seven years, and if you attempt to fight any of these charges on your own, you’ll be forced to return to Las Vegas numerous times for the requisite personal court appearances. That’s why it’s so important for an out-of-town visitor facing DUI charges to acquire adequate local legal representation. The attorneys at Gregory & Waldo will appear in court on your behalf, and this can be crucially beneficial to anyone trying to fight the charges of DUI from hundreds or thousands of miles away.
Out-of-town visitors charged with driving under the influence in Las Vegas can easily find themselves in double trouble. That’s because Nevada is a member of both the Interstate Driver License Compact and the Non-Resident Violator Compact. Under the first of these two agreements, it has pledged to share information concerning anyone convicted of DUI in Nevada with the Department of Motor Vehicles in that person’s state of permanent residence. At the bidding of the NRVC, it will additionally spread the news of any violator’s DUI offense to each of the compact’s other member states.
Most states, Nevada included, are members of both the DLC and the NRVC. However, California, Oregon, Alaska and Montana subscribe only to the DLC while Georgia, Massachusetts and Tennessee enjoy an alliance with the NRVC alone. Wisconsin and Michigan, on the other hand, belong to neither.
What all of this means is that if you are convicted, your home state will also take action against you up to and including license suspension in accordance with its own regulations and laws. This makes it even more advisable for people charged with DUI in Nevada to secure legal help instead of trying to battle the charges on their own.
Representation for Las Vegas Tourists
While it is always possible for an out-of-state resident to fight DUI charges without legal assistance, this option will force you to return to Las Vegas for your first hearing and any subsequent court dates. Even then, your chances of mounting a successful defense on your own will be painfully low.
At Gregory & Waldo we’ve fought for the rights of numerous nonresidents of Nevada who face charges of driving under the influence. Standing in for you in court is only the beginning. We will also collect and evaluate the evidence against you; develop and mount a credible defense; and negotiate to have the charges against you either substantially reduced or entirely dismissed.
When it comes to DUI, the experienced attorneys at Gregory & Waldo understand the ins and outs of Nevada’s DUI laws and the Las Vegas court system. If you are an out-of-town resident facing charges of driving under the influence in Nevada, don’t try to go it alone. Give yourself a fighting chance. Call Gregory & Waldo today at 702-830-7925 for a free consultation.