First Offense DUI in Maryland
What will happen with a first offense DUI in Maryland? Most first offense DUI charges in Maryland result in a PBJ as the outcome. A PBJ is an acronym for “probation before judgment.” A PBJ is defined in Maryland Criminal Procedure 6-220(b).
BENEFITS OF A PBJ IN A DUI CASE
A PBJ means that the defendant has not been found guilty. The law states, “a court may stay the entering of judgment, defer further proceedings, and place the defendant on probation subject to reasonable conditions…” When the Court “stay the entering of judgment” it is not entering a guilty finding and instead enters a PBJ for the charge or charges.
If the Court “stays” the entering of judgment, then the Court has not found you guilty and you can say in the future that you have not been convicted.
Another benefit of a PBJ is points will not be assessed to the driver’s Maryland driving record. Maryland Transportation Article 16-402 states, “After the conviction of an individual for a violation……or of the vehicle laws or regulations of this State or of any local authority, points shall be assessed against the individual…”
Since the driver has not been convicted and the judgment of guilty has been stayed, points will not be assessed to the driving record for the driver.
FIRST OFFENSE DUI IN MARYLAND
A PBJ for a first offense DUI in Maryland is not automatic. The driver/defendant must appear in Court with a lawyer that presents mitigation on behalf of the defendant. If the defendant appears without a lawyer or “pro se,” the likelehood of receiving a PBJ for a first offense DUI is must lower. In addition, if a defendant does not has an attorney at trial, Judges will typically increase the fines and conditions of probation.
A lawyer may also be helpful is litigating your DUI/DWI charges. This means challenging the State’s evidence and pleading “not guilty.” If a defendant pleads not guilty, they can elect a bench or Judge trial or a jury trial. When this happens, the Judge or jury must determine if the driver violated the law.
FIRST OFFENSE DUI/DWI LAWYERS IN MARYLAND
If you’ve been charged with a first offense DUI in Maryland, you want to hire the best DUI lawyer for your charges. The Law Offices of Randolph Rice is a top rated DUI/DWI defense law firm in Maryland. Contact their office today at 410.288.2900 if you’ve been charged with drunk driving in Maryland