Allentown PA DUI Lawyer

Allentown PA DUI lawyer

Steven E. Kellis understands when you face Pennsylvania DUI charges, your life can get very complicated quickly. First, the worst thing you can do is ignore the charge. Skipping court will only result in a bench warrant being issued for your arrest. Even a misdemeanor DUI can result in suspended driving privileges.

Depending on the circumstances of your DUI, you can face fines ranging from $300-$10,000; imprisonment for up to six months; suspension of your driver’s license for up to 18 months; up to 150 hours of community service; court-ordered alcohol highway safety school; substance abuse treatment; and more.

As an experienced Allentown PA DUI lawyer, Steven Kellis will review the facts of your case and help you pursue the best possible outcome.

What are some Allentown, PA DUI Statistics

Allentown has a high rate of DUI arrests but a relatively low rate of DUI-related crashes and deaths.

According to information provided by the Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania, nearly a third (32.1%) of all Court of Common Pleas cases in Lehigh, PA, are DUI arrests. For perspective, DUIs comprise 25.2% of Common Pleas cases in Pennsylvania.

On the other hand, the county ranks 51 out of the 67 counties for its rate of DUI-related deaths, meaning it has one of the lowest rates in Pennsylvania.

But DUI is still an issue in the Keystone State. According to Times News Online, DUI arrests increased by 10% in Pennsylvania in 2020.


What are the Consequences of DUI in Allentown?

The state of Pennsylvania places harsh consequences on DUI offenders, and Allentown is no exception. Depending on the level and occurrence of your DUI, you may face the following penalties:

  • Drivers’ license suspension
  • Probation
  • Fines
  • Attendance in alcohol highway safety school
  • Jail time
  • Mandatory ignition interlock device (IID)
  • Treatment when ordered

Of course, those are just the penalties imposed by law. A DUI charge also comes with a heavy stigma, and you might have trouble applying for a loan, mortgage, scholarship, or lease agreement.

The penalties and stigma are harsh, and although it’s a crime to drive while under the influence, that mistake doesn’t have to ruin your life. Call Allentown PA DUI lawyer Steven Kellis today to learn how he’ll fight to have your charges dropped or reduced.

Where Will My Case Be Heard After a DUI Arrest in Allentown?

If you are arrested for a DUI in Allentown, Pennsylvania, your first court date is for a preliminary hearing. It will be held at the District Court for whatever district the arresting police officer had jurisdiction in.

A Magistrate Judge conducts preliminary hearings. There are nine different Magistrate Judges with districts in Allentown. Their names, districts, and courthouse addresses are as follows:

  • District 31-1-01
    • Magistrate: Patricia M. Engler
    • 1201 Sumner Ave
    • Allentown, PA 18102
  • District 31-1-02
    • Magistrate: Rashid Santiago
    • 1101 Hamilton Street
    • Suite 150
    • Allentown, PA 18101
  • District 31-1-03
    • Magistrate: Ronald S. Manescu
    • 1428 Hamilton St
    • Allentown, PA 18102
  • District 31-1-04
    • Magistrate: David M. Howells, Jr.
    • 1501 Lehigh St
    • Suite 104
    • Allentown, PA 18103
  • District 31-1-05
    • Magistrate: Michael D. D’Amore
    • 1007 Union Blvd
    • Allentown, PA 18109
  • District 31-1-08
    • Magistrate: Michael J. Pochron
    • 3000 South Pike Ave
    • Allentown, PA 18103
  • District 31-2-01
    • Magistrate: Karen C. Devine
    • 14 N. 6th
    • Allentown, PA 18101
  • District 31-2-02
    • Magistrate: Jacob E. Hammond
    • 3404 Hamilton Blvd
    • Allentown, PA 18103
  • District 31-3-02
    • Magistrate: Michael Faulkner
    • Green Hills Commerce Center
    • 5925 Tilghman, Suite 500
    • Allentown, PA 18104

Are there DUI Plea Options In Pennsylvania?

There are several options for entering a plea after you have been arrested for a DUI in Pennsylvania:

Delaying a Plea

Optionally, you can delay your plea at your arraignment if you would like to appoint a lawyer or have some other legally sound reason to request a delay. This option is preferable for those who expected to get an offer for Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (ARD) but did not, who have not yet appointed an Allentown PA DUI lawyer, or who have introduced motions to dismiss evidence or reduce their charges.

Not Guilty

A “not guilty” plea means that you intend to defend yourself in a court of law with the hope that you will be acquitted. Remember that pleading “not guilty” can mean you do not expect to be found guilty because the prosecution lacks evidence, committed a procedural mistake, or has given you some other reason to think you have a chance at not being convicted.


A guilty plea is an option, but you should first strongly consider negotiating with the prosecution with the help of an experienced DUI attorney in Allentown. You can often get charges reduced, request more lenient sentencing, or make other favorable agreements. Otherwise, you are handing over a “guilty” plea in exchange for nothing, which is not in your best interest.

Nolo Contendere

A “nolo” plea is the same as a guilty plea. It means “no contest” because you do not wish to contest the charges. Pleading “nolo” can sometimes have benefits for certain minor traffic violations and other non-criminal charges, but it is never a good option when facing DUI charges.

What is the Pennsylvania ARD Program?

The Pennsylvania Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition Program, aka the PA ARD Program, is designed for non-violent first-time DUI offenders who do not have aggravating factors in their DUI case. Aggravating factors include having a minor in the car at the time of arrest, a prior conviction, a history of violent crime, or a DUI that involved injury or death to another.

If you complete the program successfully, your case will be dismissed. Your Allentown DUI attorney will expunge the charge from your criminal history by filing a petition and an order.

ARD is only available once and only under certain circumstances. If someone participates in the program, they can never do so again. This means that if you can fight and have your DUI charges dropped or lessened, you may be in a better legal position than an ARD participant.

In ARD cases, a competent Pennsylvania DUI lawyer must be very important. They will take you through the PA legal system and help you gain entry into the ARD program.

In addition, they must also do the DUI expungement for you after completion of the program. DUI expungement is not automatic once the Pennsylvania ARD Program is completed. Call our Allentown, PA DUI attorneys to discuss how they can help you and whether or not the PA ARD Program is a good fit for you.

Don’t Wait to Call an Allentown DUI Lawyer

If you have been arrested for a DUI in Allentown, hiring an attorney is in your best interest. You should be proactive in handling your DUI case; hiring a lawyer is the first step. Please contact The Law Offices of Steven E. Kellis today to schedule a free consultation. We are available and dedicated to helping you achieve a favorable outcome. There is no obligation, and all consultations are confidential.

Steven Kellis is a Pennsylvania DUI attorney with decades of experience, and he serves those facing criminal, drug crime, and DUI charges throughout Eastern Pennsylvania, including the Allentown, Bethlehem, Chester County, Easton, Jim Thorpe, Lancaster, Media, Norristown, Philadelphia, Pottstown, and Upper Darby, Pennsylvania areas.

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