Across the Valley of the Sun and around the state of Arizona, people are ready to celebrate the unofficial close of summer with the annual Labor Day weekend. As in past years, it is certain that there will be plenty of hot dogs, potato chips, ice-cold beverages – and DUI arrests over the holiday.Law enforcement agencies from Scottsdale to Sedona to Sierra Vista – and all points in between – will be out with extra officers, patrol vehicles, checkpoints and more.

Many of our regular readers will probably recall that last year’s Labor Day weekend crackdown resulted in hundreds of DUI arrests across the state: 468 for misdemeanor drunk driving and another 63 for felony DUI, according to news reports.

There were an additional 123 arrests for DUI-drugs. According to a report, the average BAC (blood alcohol content) in the DUI arrests was .15 percent, or nearly double Arizona’s legal threshold of .08 percent.

Two years ago, there were 490 DUI arrests and more than four dozen more arrested for aggravated DUI. According to a Phoenix radio station report, 114 of those arrested were charged with extreme DUI, which means that the driver’s BAC was tested at .15 percent or above.

Let’s take a quick look at the penalties for three DUI categories we’ve mentioned:

  • DUI: a first offense can mean that you’ll be jailed for no less than 10 consecutive days and fined at least $1,250 plus fees and costs. As is the case with all DUI convictions, you’ll be required to install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle at your expense.
  • Extreme DUI: a first offense means no less than 30 consecutive days behind bars and you’ll be fined at least $2,500 plus fees costs. A second offense means at least 120 consecutive days in jail and a fine of at least $3,250 plus fees and costs.
  • Aggravated DUI: a conviction can mean a license revocation of a year and a presumptive prison sentence of two and half years.

If you have been charged with any of these offenses, contact a law office known for protecting liberty, rights and driving privileges at all times.