The DWI laws for most first-time offenders in Missouri stipulate jail time is not required. Of course, there are exceptions including an injury, or death associated with the DWI, or a high blood alcohol concentration (BAC) reading.
If there are multiple convictions for DWI or DUI, then the driver may face penalties from both the court and the Missouri Department of Revenue (DOR). The penalties may include:
- Jail time
- Alcohol treatment programs
- Driver’s license suspension or revocation
Jail Time for DWI Arrests in Kansas City, Missouri
Missouri requires a minimum of two days in jail for a first DWI offense (Class B misdemeanor) with a maximum sentence of six months. Kansas City will often substitute community service for the minimum jail sentence. There will still be fines, probation, and a suspended license.
Usually, misdemeanor offenses will not result in more than one year in jail, a $1000 fine, or a combination of both. According to the state DWI laws, first-time offenders in Kansas City may face the following penalties:
- Eight points on your driving record
- Up to six months in jail
- Up to $500 in fines
- Ninety-day driver license suspension, the last sixty days will be reduced to a restricted driving privilege (RPD) permit or 90 days ignition interlock restricted privileges
- Two years of conditional probation requiring the completion of a substance abuse evaluation and education/treatment, community service hours and/or random testing for alcohol
A second offense is classified as a Class A Misdemeanor. The penalties will be stiffer for a repeat offender.
- Twelve points added to your driving record
- Must serve at least 10 days in jail if a prior offense was within 5 years. Could be as long as a year in jail
- Up to $1000 in fines
- Two years’ probation
- Revocation of driving privileges for one year
For any additional DWI arrests, now it is a felony. The penalties are as follows:
- Up to 15 years in prison (must serve at least 30 days to 2 years depending on the number of prior offenses)
- A fine up to $5000
- 2 to 5 years probation with the Missouri Department of Corrections
- Revocation of driving privileges for 10 years without a license and a mandatory ignition interlock device placed on your vehicle
Multiple DUI/DWI offenses result in more severe penalties and Missouri imposes some of the nation’s stiffest consequences for a conviction.
What is a DWI Enhancement in Missouri?
A DWI enhancement is any prior “intoxication-related offense” that might trigger additional charges, including certain drug or assault charges related to DWI driving.
There is no statute of limitations. The state can use a 25-year-old DWI to enhance the charges. It will not matter if the old charges were State or Municipal, a fine, or a guilty plea; the charges increase your potential punishment and mean the difference between freedom and incarceration.
Missouri has four categories of enhancement:
- Prior offender – anyone who pled guilty or was found guilty of one prior DWI arrest
- Persistent offender – someone who pled guilty or was found guilty of at least two prior DWI offenses
- Aggravated offender – person who pled guilty or was found guilty of at least three prior DWI or other alcohol-related offenses
- Chronic offender – anyone who pled guilty to four or more DWI-related traffic offenses or a combination of intoxication-related offenses and other alcohol-related offenses
The Missouri courts also require continuous alcohol monitoring not only as a condition of probation but also as bond.
Are There Different DWI Laws for Commercial Drivers and Underage Drinkers in Missouri?
A first offense for a commercial driver means disqualification from driving a commercial vehicle for at least one year. If the driver is transporting hazardous materials, the disqualification period is at least three years.
If there is a second DWI/DUI conviction while driving a commercial vehicle, the offender is disqualified from driving a commercial vehicle for anywhere from 10 years to life.
Because underage drinkers tend to engage in more episodes of binge drinking and cause many DWI/DUI accidents, Missouri standards are stricter and the penalties are harsher for those under the age of 21.
Besides charged with driving under the influence, underage drinkers frequently find themselves charged with:
- Distributing alcohol to other minors
- Child endangerment
- Possession of false identification
Reach out to a Kansas City Attorney to Discuss Missouri DUI Laws & Arrests
If you or a loved one are charged with a DWI/DUI in Kansas City, our team is committed to providing outstanding results and personalized attention to your case. Experienced in Missouri DUI laws, we are always available to discuss your situation in a free consultation. Please contact the Cornerstone Law Firm at 816-581-4040.