Nope. Aggravated DWI in New Hampshire does not mean that you or the officer were in a bad mood at the time of the arrest. Instead, Aggravated DWI is NH’s way of saying that you may have to suffer enhanced penalties if the prosecutor can prove that at the time of your DUI arrest, you were impaired and:
a) Driving 30 miles per hour in excess of the posted speed limit;
b) Caused a motor vehicle accident that resulted in serious bodily injury to someone;
c) Tried to flee or hide from the officer who pulled you over;
d) Had a passenger in the car under the age of 16 years old;
e) Had an alcohol concentration of over .16.
The most common cause for an Aggravated DWI charge is having an alcohol concentration over.16. That is double the legal limit of .08. Aggravated DWI charges are serious because the punishment well exceeds that of a normal DWI charge.
The minimum punishment for an Aggravated DWI is:
a) A conviction for a Class A Misdemeanor;
b) A Fine of not less than $750 plus court imposed penalty assessment;
c) A Mandatory sentence of not less than 17 consecutive days in the House of Correction, of which 12 days shall be suspended. (You can receive up to a year in jail as this is a Class A Misdemeanor);
d) The Court will refer you to the Impaired Driver Care Management Program to schedule a full substance use disorder evaluation at your expense;
e) Upon release from jail you shall schedule a substance use disorder evaluation within 30 days of release (there is no initial screening as with a simple DWI conviction), complete the required substance use disorder evaluation within 60 days of release, and comply with the service plan developed;
f) Your driver’s license will be suspended for not less than 18 months and up to 2 years;
g) Upon confirmation from the Impaired Driver Care Management Program that you are in full compliance with the service plan, the court may suspend up to 6 months of the sentence with the condition that an interlock device be installed for the period of the suspended sentence.
h) You will be ordered to install an interlock device for not less than 12 months nor more than 2 years at your expense;
i) You will be responsible for paying all associated costs and fees for these programs.
Unlike a regular DUI, an Aggravated DUI is a Class A misdemeanor. There is nothing easy or casual about an Aggravated DWI. Prosecutors and judges alike view Aggravated DUIs with more scrutiny and disfavor than regular DWIs. A .16 may sound like a mere number, but to them it screams “this defendant was over twice the legal limit!”
We have never met anyone who blew a .16 and said, “Wow, I am sure glad I took that breath test after all!” Anyone who has taken a breath test and has blown higher than the legal limit (.08) or twice the legal limit (.16) probably thought they were going to be fine.
Therefore, the lesson from this page should be that no one ever really knows what their alcohol concentration is in their body before they take a breath (or blood test). SO, why tempt fate. Unless you have had NOTHING to drink, it is best to avoid the breath test.
People usually get all nervous about the fact that they may lose their license if they refuse to take a breath or blood test. Well, if you take a breath/blood test and you score over a .08, you are going to lose your license anyway. There is no reason to help the police convict you by giving them evidence of an alcohol concentration of higher than .08 or .16.
Our telephone number is: 603-595-5525