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Jail Time After a DUI Conviction in Maryland

Driving while intoxicated can endanger you as well as others on the road. As a result, law enforcement takes these cases seriously and implements strict punishments if someone is caught drinking and driving. A DUI attorney may be able to help you through the legal process if you face jail time after a DUI conviction in Maryland.

After Being Arrested For a DUI

If someone is arrested for a DUI in Maryland, police typically take the arrestee to the police station to be held for processing. The main processing section of the law enforcement agency is known as central booking, which is often located in the same building or near the county jail. At central booking, law enforcement puts the arrestee’s criminal offense on their record.

Being Released After Central Booking

After a person is booked for a DUI, they are either released or immediately jailed. If the detainee is released, they receive paperwork describing their charged offense or offense along with their court date.

This person may also get MVA paperwork explaining their license suspension. When an individual’s license is suspended after a DUI charge, they may obtain a temporary 45-day paper license, so they are still able to drive to work and make necessary appointments. After 45 days, their complete license suspension begins. The MVA paperwork also notifies the DUI offender that they have ten days to challenge their license unsuspension.

Once released, detainees are allowed to make a phone call to a family member or a friend to get them. Depending on the mental and physical state of the arrestee, either they can make the call on their own or an officer will make one for them on their behalf.

If DUI offender is inebriated to the point that it is not safe to release them, central booking may hold them until they sober up and can go home safely. If they need medical care, they may be transferred to a hospital or medical facility.

Why Might Someone Not Be Released After Central Booking?

A person may not be released after central booking either because they have several past DUIs or there is an outstanding warrant for them. Based on the nature of the allegation, they may be held in central booking.

A magistrate judge decides whether the person should be held on bond or released on their own recognizance. If the magistrate believes they are eligible to be released under their own recognizance, they likely will be released. If the magistrate judge imposes bail, the person will be held until they post bond or enter a plea bargain.

The Jail Environment in Maryland

Each county has a unique facility, but all jails are not intended to be pleasant places. The environment of a jail varies in Maryland. Jails in Baltimore City or Prince George’s County tend to be busy and crowded because they could have a thousand or more people at a time held in custody. Smaller, rural jails such as in Oakland County may only have a handful of inmates at any given time. Generally, in Maryland, there is also a lot of variance in how efficiently and effectively the jails are administered.

Some facilities have recreational activities for inmates, activities for intellectual pursuits, or opportunities to work within the jail. Other jails may be very limited in terms of those activities. Depending on the correction facility, inmates may not have all their basic needs met. Unfortunately, this issue is common in Maryland and many jurisdictions across the country

Jail detains people in custody who have been arrested, are awaiting a hearing, awaiting a trial date, or serving a sentence. It varies by jurisdiction, but generally, if they are serving a sentence of fewer than 18 months, they will serve it at the local jail. For a longer sentence, they generally will be transferred to a state prison administrated by the Maryland State Department of Corrections.

Medical Resources in Maryland Jails

Basic medical resources should be available in every jail unit. However, medical departments in jails tend to vary in resources and type of care depending on the facility. Medical units should include nurses and medical professionals on staff or on call who can treat physical or mental health issues. They should be able to provide prescription medication and address various medical needs. If the jail is unable to treat the inmate at the jail facility, they can be transferred to a hospital or other medical office to receive the necessary treatment.

Are Breath Tests Conducted in Jail in Maryland?

An inmate typically may not be required to submit to a breath test in jail. Presumably, a DUI offender has already been charged and taken a breath test. If there is a suspicion that someone obtained and consumed alcohol while in jail, they may be asked to submit to a breathalyzer. The tests are readily available because law enforcement officers have breathalyzers in their possession, and the results are immediate.

Jail Time Penalties for a DUI in Maryland

A person convicted of a first DUI offense in Maryland may go to jail for up to one year. For each subsequent offense within the past five years, the maximum penalty is two years in jail.  While there is no minimum sentence for a DUI, the maximum penalty for a first offense DUI conviction is one year. For a second offense, the maximum penalty is two years, and for the third, the maximum penalty is three years of incarceration.

Contact an Attorney If You Are Facing Possible Jail Time for a DUI in Maryland

The consequences for driving while under the influence are extremely serious as you are likely to face jail time. By hiring a knowledgeable DUI attorney, they could help you avoid jail time or challenge your license suspension. If you are facing jail time after a DUI conviction in Maryland, reach out to discuss your case.

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