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Missouri adds Class E felony for habitual DWI offenders - KOAM TV 7

Missouri adds Class E felony for habitual DWI offenders

Updated:
JOPLIN, MISSOURI -

Of the laws going into effect on January 1, habitual DWI offenders may now be subject to harsher penalties.

The addition of a "Class E" felony shifts the law as it was, and clears up some existing inconsistencies.

"They didn't change a lot of the requirements, honestly they didn't. They've titled out new ranges of punishment, now there's an E felony that we've never had to deal with before," attorney Roscoe H. Miller Jr. said.

New Years Eve is a prime time to take note of the new law, as those arrested for DWI in Missouri will be prosecuted under the amended law.

"It isn't getting any easier for driving while intoxicated. They tend to be slippery slope, it's no longer the good ole boys system where "he just didn't know", the local drunk, we're just not doing it anymore," Miller said.

The law cleans up an existing law where DWI behind the wheel of boats, aircraft and motor vehicles were all different. Now they will serve the same punishments.

The law language in it's entirety is below:

Missouri Revised Statutes

Chapter 577
Public Safety Offenses

August 28, 2016

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Driving while intoxicated--sentencing restrictions.

577.010. 1. A person commits the offense of driving while intoxicated if he or she operates a vehicle while in an intoxicated condition.

2. The offense of driving while intoxicated is:

(1) A class B misdemeanor;

(2) A class A misdemeanor if:

(a) The defendant is a prior offender; or

(b) A person less than seventeen years of age is present in the vehicle;

(3) A class E felony if:

(a) The defendant is a persistent offender; or

(b) While driving while intoxicated, the defendant acts with criminal negligence to cause physical injury to another person;

(4) A class D felony if:

(a) The defendant is an aggravated offender;

(b) While driving while intoxicated, the defendant acts with criminal negligence to cause physical injury to a law enforcement officer or emergency personnel; or

(c) While driving while intoxicated, the defendant acts with criminal negligence to cause serious physical injury to another person;

(5) A class C felony if:

(a) The defendant is a chronic offender;

(b) While driving while intoxicated, the defendant acts with criminal negligence to cause serious physical injury to a law enforcement officer or emergency personnel; or

(c) While driving while intoxicated, the defendant acts with criminal negligence to cause the death of another person;

(6) A class B felony if:

(a) The defendant is a habitual offender; or

(b) While driving while intoxicated, the defendant acts with criminal negligence to cause the death of a law enforcement officer or emergency personnel;

(7) A class A felony if the defendant is a habitual offender as a result of being found guilty of an act described under paragraph (d) of subdivision (11) of section 577.001 and is found guilty of a subsequent violation of such paragraph.

3. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection 2 of this section, a person found guilty of the offense of driving while intoxicated as a first offense shall not be granted a suspended imposition of sentence:

(1) Unless such person shall be placed on probation for a minimum of two years; or

(2) In a circuit where a DWI court or docket created under section 478.007 or other court-ordered treatment program is available, and where the offense was committed with fifteen-hundredths of one percent or more by weight of alcohol in such person's blood, unless the individual participates and successfully completes a program under such DWI court or docket or other court-ordered treatment program.

4. If a person is found guilty of a second or subsequent offense of driving while intoxicated, the court may order the person to submit to a period of continuous alcohol monitoring or verifiable breath alcohol testing performed a minimum of four times per day as a condition of probation.

5. If a person is not granted a suspended imposition of sentence for the reasons described in subsection 3 of this section:

(1) If the individual operated the vehicle with fifteen-hundredths to twenty-hundredths of one percent by weight of alcohol in such person's blood, the required term of imprisonment shall be not less than forty-eight hours;

(2) If the individual operated the vehicle with greater than twenty-hundredths of one percent by weight of alcohol in such person's blood, the required term of imprisonment shall be not less than five days.

6. A person found guilty of the offense of driving while intoxicated:

(1) As a prior offender, persistent offender, aggravated offender, chronic offender, or habitual offender shall not be granted a suspended imposition of sentence or be sentenced to pay a fine in lieu of a term of imprisonment, section 557.011 to the contrary notwithstanding;

(2) As a prior offender shall not be granted parole or probation until he or she has served a minimum of ten days imprisonment:

(a) Unless as a condition of such parole or probation such person performs at least thirty days of community service under the supervision of the court in those jurisdictions which have a recognized program for community service; or

(b) The offender participates in and successfully completes a program established under section 478.007 or other court-ordered treatment program, if available, and as part of either program, the offender performs at least thirty days of community service under the supervision of the court;

(3) As a persistent offender shall not be eligible for parole or probation until he or she has served a minimum of thirty days imprisonment:

(a) Unless as a condition of such parole or probation such person performs at least sixty days of community service under the supervision of the court in those jurisdictions which have a recognized program for community service; or

(b) The offender participates in and successfully completes a program established under section 478.007 or other court-ordered treatment program, if available, and as part of either program, the offender performs at least sixty days of community service under the supervision of the court;

(4) As an aggravated offender shall not be eligible for parole or probation until he or she has served a minimum of sixty days imprisonment;

(5) As a chronic or habitual offender shall not be eligible for parole or probation until he or she has served a minimum of two years imprisonment; and

(6) Any probation or parole granted under this subsection may include a period of continuous alcohol monitoring or verifiable breath alcohol testing performed a minimum of four times per day.

(L. 1977 S.B. 60, A.L. 1982 S.B. 513, A.L. 2010 H.B. 1695, et al., A.L. 2014 S.B. 491, A.L. 2014 H.B. 1371, A.L. 2015 S.B. 254, A.L. 2016 H.B. 2332)

Effective 1-01-17

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