Vermont criminal laws, just as laws in other states in the USA, define crime as unlawful conduct that is punishable by various sanctions, such as fines and imprisonment. Vermont has state specific laws for criminal acts such as assault, theft, DUI and drug crimes. Apart from the mentioned, the state’s criminal laws regulate sanctions for crimes such as arson, bribery, child abuse, domestic violence, extortion, gambling, computer crimes, embezzlement, indecent exposure, manslaughter (voluntary and involuntary), kidnapping, different kind of frauds (telemarketing, tax evasion, insurance etc), murder, rape, prostitution and so on.
Statistics show that in 2011, there were more than 16, 000 reported crimes, including 11 murders. In 2014 the number of crimes decreased to about 10,000 crimes and 10 murders. Unfortunately, a few years after, the state experienced a 77% increase in drug related crimes. Reports show that more than 80% of prisoners are addicted to drugs or are in prison due to their addiction and drug-related crimes. In order to reduce the amount of crimes in the state, capital punishment was applied. Today, the state no longer practices death penalty.
Vermont DUI Laws
Vermont has very strict laws against driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. If you are driving with a BAC level higher than 0.08 percent, you are violating DUI laws per se. If your BAC level is below .08 percent, but you are displaying signs of drunk driving behavior, you can also be prosecuted. The definition of being under the influence means you are not in an appropriate condition to operate a vehicle. It doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to be drunk in order to be “under influence”. If you are not able to drive with care and caution of a sober person, you are committing a DUI.
If you think you can get away with drunk driving by refusing to take a chemical test, you are wrong. Vermont has implied consent laws that mean that by getting a privilege to drive, you have also given your consent to submit to a blood, breath, or urine sample whenever a law enforcement officer ask you to do so. If you refuse to take the test, you will automatically lose your license and pay hefty fines for your act. If this is not your first DUI, you may even have to spend some time in jail.
Hire a Criminal Defense Lawyer
The only way to fight a DUI in Vermont is to hire an experienced DUI lawyer who will explain your rights to you and navigate you through the legal system properly . In many cases, your attorney will be able to disprove a piece of evidence or get the prosecutor to plea bargain your case, and reduce your sentence. If your BAC level was close to the limit, your attorney may get a wet reckless for your case. A wet reckless involves a crime of reckless driving with alcohol involved. It is still considered a DUI offense, but it doesn’t carry the same penalties. However, if you are charged with drunk driving in the future, this will be considered your first DUI offense.