The penalties for drunk driving in Iowa are serious. They are even more serious for those who have one or more previous convictions for operating while intoxicated. A third offense within 12 years will be charged as a felony and a conviction can result in significant fines and a state prison sentence. The public has no sympathy for those charged with multiple offense OWI. Prosecutors and judges often take aim for the maximum possible sentence in these cases.
Anyone facing repeat OWI charges in Iowa is in an extremely serious legal situation. In many cases, however, there is a basis to fight the charges. With the help of an experienced OWI defense attorney, it may be possible to get the charges reduced or even dismissed entirely.
In any OWI case in which the accused has prior convictions, it is important to review those prior convictions to determine whether they justify the current charge. In some situations a prior arrest or conviction should not be a legal basis for enhancing the current charge. If the prosecution is counting a prior offense that shouldn't be counted, it may be possible to get the current charges reduced.
As in any OWI case, there are often multiple grounds to challenge the prosecution's case. If the arresting officer did not have sufficient grounds for a reasonable suspicion to pull the driver over in the first place, the charges can be dismissed. It is also possible to challenge the evidence of intoxication. There are many ways to challenge the validity of field sobriety tests, breath tests and blood tests. For more information on how our law firm can help those facing multiple offense OWI charges, please visit our web page.