First time offenders can face mandatory jail sentences depending on the nature of the violation. The statute looks at circumstances such as blood alcohol percentage and whether or not an accident occurred. There is generally a three tier sentencing structure, and a thorough chart is available at the sentencing commission website.
Alternatives to Mandatory Incarceration
“House Arrest” refers to an electronic monitoring program. Each county has different rules governing the role of electronic monitoring for DUI Offenders. Monroe County, Pennsylvania makes an electronic monitoring program available to certain second time and occasionally first time DUI offenders who are not otherwise eligible for ARD, depending on the unique circumstances of each case. Through the program, you can eliminate the need to serve any jail time for your DUI, and instead serve your sentence from the confines of your own home. An individual assessment must be given to determine the role electronic monitoring may play in your case. Speak with us to learn what to expect from these alternatives and what pitfalls you want to avoid to insure successful completion of the programs.
“Split Sentence” refers to a 6 month jail and 6 month electronic monitoring program that is available to certain third time offenders who are in the highest tier of the chart (i.e.: .16% BAC and above). The program makes individuals eligible for early release from jail into an electronic monitoring program. During the first six months, an individual can earn the privilege of work release if granted by the sentencing judge. This gives you a chance to complete half of the mandatory one year sentence associated with a highest tier third time offense outside of a jail cell. The house arrest program in Monroe County has been undergoing changes as of 2012 and it is important to speak with a practitioner familiar with the county.
Other Alternatives to Jail Sentences. In those situations where an individual has recognized a serious problem with alcohol or controlled substances, inpatient rehabilitation is often necessary. Where a defendant choses to undergo inpatient rehabilitation during the course of the criminal case, we will argue for a time credit against any sentence issued.
Remember, “The Right Lawyer Can Make a Difference.”