In Wyoming, it's against the law to drive or have control of a vehicle while under the influence of a controlled substance or alcohol. A conviction under Wyoming's driving under the influence (DUI) law can result in a suspended driver's license, fines, imprisonment, a substance abuse assessment, and the installation of an ignition interlock device on the defendant's car.
A person who has an alcohol concentration of 0.08% or more within two hours of the time of driving or being in physical control of a car is presumed to have been under the influence. If a person has a blood alcohol level of more than 0.05% and less than 0.08%, there is no presumption the person was or was not under the influence. Finally, if a person has an alcohol concentration of 0.05% or less, the presumption is that the person was not under the influence. It is important to note that these limits apply to adults 21 and over. Wyoming has a zero tolerance policy for persons under the legal drinking age, meaning that a blood alcohol level of 0.02% or more will result in a violation of Wyoming's DUI laws.
Penalties and Sentencing
The penalties and sentencing for a DUI conviction vary depending on if it is the first offense, or if there are previous convictions. Even a first offense will result in the defendant's driver's license being suspended or revoked. A person convicted of a DUI as a first offense is guilty of a misdemeanor, and as such, can be imprisoned up to six months and/or fined up to $750.
A second DUI conviction with 10 years will result in a minimum prison sentence of 7 days and a maximum of six months, and will be fined a minimum of $200 and a maximum of $750. A third conviction will result in a prison term of at least thirty days and at most six months, and a fine of at least $750 and up to $3,000. Finally, four or more convictions within a ten-year period is a felony and carries be a prison term of up to seven years and/or fines of up to $10,000.
Ignition Interlock Device
An ignition interlock device (IID) screens the alcohol in a person's breath, and prevents a car from starting if it detects an alcohol concentration over an established limit. The device also keeps track of any instances in which the car did not start because the alcohol concentration was over the limit. The duration that an IID is required to be on a person's car depends on how many times the person has been convicted of a DUI.
A first conviction will result in the installation of an IID for six months if the defendant's blood alcohol level was 0.15% or more. A second conviction results in an IID for one year, while a third conviction results in an IID for two years. If a person is convicted four or more times, an IID will be required for the remainder of the defendant's life. In that case, the defendant can apply to the court for removal of the IID five years after conviction, and every five years after that.
Any individual who drives or is in actual physical control of a car on a public street or highway in Wyoming gives implied consent to submit to a chemical test under certain circumstances. If an individual is arrested for an offense that falls under the driving while intoxicated statute, he or she will be given a chemical test as promptly as possible after the arrest. In order to administer the test, the peace officer must have probable cause that the driver is under the influence, and it must be incident to a lawful arrest.
If a person refuses to submit to a chemical test, the chemical test can only be given if the driver caused serious bodily injury or death, or upon the issuance of a search warrant. If a person is unconscious, dead, or in a condition rendering him or her unable to cooperate with a chemical test, his or her consent is implied, as previously stated.
Getting Legal Help
If you or someone close to you is facing a DUI charge in Wyoming, it's in your best interest to contact a DUI lawyer in your area.