York, PA DUI Lawyer

In Pennsylvania, drunk driving is a serious and expensive crime. After you are accused of DUI in York, PA, you could face fines, driver’s license suspension, a criminal record, and even jail time.

Work with Kellis Law Firm to protect yourself from criminal penalties, and act fast to secure a capable legal team. Attorney Steven E. Kellis has decades of experience helping clients get their DUIs reduced or dismissed.

york pa dui lawyer

Penalties for DUI in Pennsylvania 

The state of Pennsylvania has set penalties for DUI charges, which take into account criminal history and blood alcohol level. 

While a blood alcohol content (BAC) level over 0.08 percent could result in criminal conviction, probation, and fines, a higher BAC could lead to jail time, thousands of dollars in fines, license suspension or revocation, or driving restrictions. 

Below is a detailed list of the penalties you may face for various levels of impairment for a first or second DUI in Pennsylvania:

  • First offense for general impairment (BAC between .08 and .099%.)
    • Ungraded misdemeanor charge
    • Up to six months of probation
    • $300 fine
    • Attendance in alcohol highway safety school
  • Second offense for general impairment (BAC between .08 and .099%.)
    • Ungraded misdemeanor charge
    • 12-month license suspension
    • Five days to six months jail time
    • $300 to $2,500 fine
    • Attendance in alcohol highway safety school
    • One year use of an ignition interlock device
  • First offense for high BAC (.10 to .159%)
    • Ungraded misdemeanor charge
    • 12-month license suspension
    • 48 hours to six months prison time
    • $500 to $5,000 fine
    • Attendance in alcohol highway safety school
  • Second offense for high BAC (.10 to .159%)
    • Ungraded misdemeanor charge
    • 12-month license suspension
    • 30 days to six months prison time
    • $750 to $5,000 fine
    • Attendance in alcohol highway safety school
    • One year use of an ignition interlock device

As you can see, DUI penalties in Pennsylvania become more severe the higher your BAC level. You likely won’t know your BAC when you leave the bar, so why risk the consequences? 

However, you should know that one mistake or wrongful conviction doesn’t mean your life is ruined. With an experienced, aggressive DUI attorney, you’ll be able to get help.

Strong DUI Defense in York, PA

Steven Kellis has over 25 years of experience defending clients who were arrested for driving while impaired by alcohol or drugs. He believes that your rights don’t end when you’re arrested and will work diligently to drop or reduce the charges against you. 

Many details affect criminal case results, and our York DUI attorneys will work with you to ensure all legal avenues are pursued throughout your case.

Our team will begin working on your case as soon as you contact us. Police and prosecutors will be actively working to convict you, but by working with an experienced York DUI lawyer, you can ensure your best interests are sought throughout the pretrial and trial stages of your case.

Steven Kellis will do all he can to defend you after you are accused of drunk driving. He has the experience needed to forcefully oppose the prosecution. Our team understands how to challenge all of the following legal issues:

Blood and breath test results. 

Many factors can affect the accuracy of these tests: atmospheric pressure, physical activity, blood composition, and hyperventilation can all lead to questionable or even false results.

Field sobriety test results. 

Field sobriety tests, including the horizontal gaze nystagmus test, the walk and turn, and the one-leg stand test, are widely used across the country. However, multiple scientists and experts have found them somewhat unreliable and even erroneous. 

On top of test flaws, some police officers may not perform the test correctly or fail to recognize legitimate medical conditions that may cause you to fail the test, leading to a wrongful conviction.

Probable cause. 

If an officer fails to make specific observations of a driver’s behavior that meet the standard of probable cause or if their observations do not align with the facts of the investigation, the arrest may be thrown out.

Unlawful search and seizure. 

An example of an illegal search and seizure would be an unwarranted drawing of the suspected drunk driver’s blood by a police officer. The police must obtain a warrant to draw someone’s blood if they suspect that person of driving under the influence. 

If they fail to obtain or present the warrant, the court may suppress that evidence. Sometimes, an illegally-obtained blood test is the only evidence in a prosecutor’s case. In that situation, the evidence will then be thrown out and the case dismissed.

Chain of custody issues. 

Chain of custody refers to the path that a piece of evidence went on to arrive at court. The prosecutor must be able to describe where and with whom the evidence was at all times. They must establish that the evidence was not tampered with or misplaced. 

If they are not able to do so, or if the evidence is proven to have been tampered with, it may be thrown out.

PA DUI lawyer Steven Kellis’ work in cases statewide provides valuable insight into the judicial process. Mr. Kellis will not rest until everything has been done to defend you from a negative outcome.

Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition Program (ARD)

The ARD program diverts certain individuals accused of minor, non-violent crimes from trial. The effect of the program is that those who complete it never truly faced prosecution, nor did they have to enter a plea. 

Those who complete the program can petition to have the DUI arrest removed (expunged) from their record.

To participate in the program, individuals have to be selected as a candidate. They must have no prior criminal history and must also fit other criteria at the program’s discretion.

Participating in ARD is a great option for some individuals charged with DUI in Pennsylvania, but it is not always the best option. If you have the opportunity to fight your charges, potentially getting them dropped or reduced, you are in a better position than an ARD participant. 

Those who go through ARD can only do so once, meaning you won’t have the opportunity again if you face another DUI arrest.

For these reasons, carefully consider whether or not it is in your best interests to participate in ARD, potentially with the help of an experienced Pennsylvania DUI lawyer.

Local Court Information for Those Facing DUI Charges in York

Arrests made in York for a DUI will refer the person facing charges to their local Magisterial District Judge, who operates under the Court of Common Pleas. Their first court appointment will be a preliminary hearing, which will be followed by an arraignment.

The main courthouse serving the City of York is located at:

232 South George Street

York, PA 17404

You can look up which Magisterial District Court you might be assigned to by looking at the directory for local County Courts.

Contact York PA DUI Attorney Steven E. Kellis

Fight back against police and prosecutors who will try to put you behind bars or subject you to other penalties. Our firm is available right now for anyone accused of a DUI. 

Call us at (215) 977-4183 or contact us online for a free initial case consultation, and speak to an experienced DUI attorney in York, PA.