Misdemeanors vs Felonies

In the state of North Carolina, there are only two types of DWI charges that are felonies. They are:

    1. Felony death by motor vehicle: a person is charged with this if, while drunk driving, he/she causes an accident that results in the death of another person. Felony death by a motor vehicle can also be charged as second-degree murder. 
    2. Habitual DWI: A person is charged with this if he/she picks up four DWI convictions in ten years. In addition to jail time (determined by a judge), a habitual DWI charge also prevents a person from ever having a license in the state of North Carolina again. 

All other DWI convictions are considered misdemeanors. Every misdemeanor conviction is followed by a separate hearing to determine the appropriate level of punishment. Prior DWI convictions, other alcohol-related offenses and any injuries inflicted upon other persons are taken into account in these follow-up hearings. Depending on what factors are associated with your DWI conviction, punishments can range from community service, jail time, license revocation or some combination of all three.

Click here to learn more about how these factors impact the punishment handed down by the judge. 

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