If you have been arrested for DUI in Kentucky, there are a number of steps.
First, you will appear in court soon after the arrest. If you are in custody, you will appear on the next business day. On a first offense, you will typically be granted an OR (own recognizance) bond after you have been in jail for 3-5 hours. If you are released from jail, you will be given paperwork with your next court date, which is generally in 1-2 weeks.
Your first appearance is called arraignment. The arraignment is simply to advise you of the charges, potential penalties and allow for a plea of either guilty or not guilty. If you plead guilty, you will be sentenced at that time. It is strongly recommended that you hire an attorney as early in the process as possible. If you have not yet consulted an attorney, plead NOT GUILTY and then ask for time.
After your Not Guilty plea, the case will be scheduled for a Pre-Trial Conference. This gives the defense attorney an opportunity to review all of the case file, including video, officer notes, field notes, and reports. Often the attorney will also “pre-try” the case with the arresting officer to determine the strength of the prosecution’s case as well as any suppression issues which may be present.
Possible penalties for first offense DUI in Kentucky include 3-30 days of jail and/or $200-500 fine, 30-120 day license suspension, mandatory DUI service fee, court costs, Alcohol/Drug evaluation and any classes recommended (20 hour minimum). The costs and fees will range from $750-$1050. If an aggravating circumstance exists, there is a mandatory 4 days of incarceration.
Realize that often there are other charges which accompany a DUI. Those may be traffic offenses, license or insurance issues, or possession of some other illegal substance. Citations may also include felony charges for wanton endangerment, assault, or homicide charges. These may be dismissed or may be more serious than the DUI charge and require special care.
If you have been charged with DUI or any other crime in Kentucky, you should seek legal advice and hire an experienced criminal defense attorney. For consultation in Northern Kentucky or Cincinnati, call Michael Bouldin at 859-581-6453 or email [email protected].