Charges of Minor DUI – bac over .02 in Washington State

The charge of Minor DUI in Washington State for Operating a Motor Vehicle over .02 is often very confusing for minors and their parents. It is often misunderstood that this charge is the same as a DUI, and that the “legal limit” for minors is .02. However, this offense is a separate offense from DUI. If a minor is truly under the influence, he or she will be charged with DUI. If a minor is not intoxicated but has a blood alcohol level over .02, he or she will be charged with Minor Operating a Motor Vehicle Over .02. This offense is a misdemeanor with a maximum penalty of 90 days and a $1,000 fine. A conviction for Minor Operating a Motor Vehicle Over .02 brings a license suspension and a requirement for SR-22 or “high-risk” insurance. The offense is sometimes referred to as “Minor DUI,” “Minor Op,” or sometimes facetiously as “Baby DUI.”

Criminal Defense Lawyer

A charge of Minor Operating Motor Vehicle Over .02 usually starts as a traffic stop for some sort of moving violation such as speeding or failure to use turn signal. If the officer has probable cause to believe a minor has consumed alcohol, he or she can request a breath sample. If the sample is refused, a minor can lose his or her license for one year. The breath sample is usually given on a BAC instrument at the police station. The portable breath test that the police keep in their cars is not admissible in court because it is not scientifically reliable. The best criminal defense lawyer usually fights the case by challenging the probable cause for arrest, or by challenging the admissibility of the breath test results. There are strict rules the police have to follow in order to have a breath test admitted into court. Charges of Minor Operating Motor Vehicle Over .02 are sent through District Court. A minor will only go through juvenile court if he or she is 15 years or younger.

Punishments for Minor Operating Motor Vehicle Over .02

In Washington State, if someone is convicted of Minor Operating Motor Vehicle Over .02, the judge will usually order that they obtain an alcohol/drug evaluation to make sure they are not chemically dependent. Defendants are often put on probation for a year.

FREE CONSULTATION in Washington State:

The Law Office of Erin Bradley McAleer will fight to ensure that you achieve the best possible outcome in your court case. Call attorney Erin Bradley McAleer today at (360) 334-6277 to schedule a free, confidential consultation.

Washington Attorney Erin Bradley McAleer represents clients throughout Southwest Washington State, including in Clark County, Cowlitz County, and Skamania County and Vancouver, Battle Ground, Camas, La Center, Ridgefield, Washougal, Woodland, Yacolt, Castle Rock, Kalama, Kelso, Longview, North Bonneville, and Stevenson. Attorney Erin Bradley McAleer focuses on the areas of Criminal Defense, Traffic Infractions, Landlord Tenant, Personal Injury, Firearm Rights Restoration, and Post-Conviction Relief (Vacating & Sealing Criminal Records).