You went out for a nice dinner with the kids. You had a few drinks while you were there, but you thought you were okay to drive. The flashing lights in your mirror disagreed, and before you know it, you found yourself facing DUI charges. But what happens to the kids? What if you get a DUI with underage passengers?
At the Scene
If you are arrested at the scene, police will likely attempt to arrange accommodations for your children. That might mean calling their other parent or grandparents. If immediate relatives are unavailable, they may ask you to make arrangements with a family friend for the night.
In either case, police are unlikely to keep children in the station overnight. Police may even try to keep your children away from you and serve you additional charges.
Tennessee takes DUIs with an underage passenger very seriously. Anyone who had a minor with them at the time of a DUI arrest faces mandatory minimum jail time and fines. Keep in mind these are only minimums; an impassioned prosecutor may push for steeper penalties.
Minimum sentencing increases alongside the child’s injuries. If your child or any person younger than 16 is injured while you are arrested for a DUI, you face a minimum of two years in prison. If the injury results in tragedy, the penalty is significantly steeper.
Making a Case
A DUI is nerve-wracking on its own, but adding the fear of losing your children can leave you paralyzed with grief. A skilled criminal defense attorney can help you fight a DUI charge and help you protect your children.
If you’re facing DUI or Child Endangerment charges, you should consult an attorney. If you’d like to discuss your case with an experienced Arlington Heights criminal attorney from Andrew Farmer Law to evaluate your case, please send us an email or call (865) 205-2637.