Arizona is one of the strictest states when it comes to drunk driving. Anyone charged with a DUI in Arizona will have to face a number of consequences. However, if you work with an experienced and qualified DUI defense attorney, the attorney can have the DUI charge reduced to a “wet reckless” charge in an effort to lessen the blow.
What Is “Wet Reckless”?
A “wet reckless” is the more common term used for a reckless driving charge that involves alcohol, hence the use of the word “wet”. It is the first of several reductions which a person suspected to be driving under the influence of alcohol may take advantage of. When someone attempts to plead guilty to a wet reckless, it is not likely to get them very far.
A wet reckless is usually offered to the offender as a plea bargain when their blood alcohol content is close to 0.08%. A wet reckless may also be used when there are holes in the prosecutor’s case, and they would rather obtain a conviction of a lesser charge than lose at trial.
Pleading Guilty To Wet Reckless
A wet reckless charge is defined under Vehicle Code 23103, which is technically a charge of driving recklessly. When someone pleads guilty to a wet reckless, they are actually pleading guilty to Vehicle Code 23103.
The charge of Vehicle Code 23103 is made “wet” by the fact that alcohol or drugs were involved in the incident.
Advantages And Disadvantages Of A Wet Reckless
Pleading to a wet reckless has its own advantages and disadvantages. Some of the Advantages of pleading guilty to a wet reckless are listed below:
- There are no mandatory sentencing enhancements for a wet reckless charge, unlike in the case of a DUI. This means that if you have prior DUI charges within 10 years, and you now plead guilty to a wet reckless charge, the enhancements will not be added to the sentence.
- There is a shorter jail term associated with a wet reckless charge as compared to a DUI. A wet reckless charge carries a maximum sentence of 90 days in jail, whereas a DUI charge carries a maximum sentence of 6 months in jail.
- There is no automatic suspension of your license with a wet reckless. If someone pleads guilty to a wet reckless charge, and they did not refuse the chemical test, their license will not be suspended. However, that’s not the case when someone is found guilty of a first time DUI. However, the DMV may separately suspend their license, and the person will have to win at the DMV hearing to keep their license when offered a wet reckless.
- The probation period for a wet reckless is generally 1 – 2 years, whereas it is between 3 – 5 years for a first time DUI.
- When someone pleads guilty to a wet reckless, they may be saving money in terms of the fines they’ll have to pay.
Some of the Disadvantages of pleading guilty to a wet reckless are listed below:
- A wet reckless charge serves as a prior within 10 years. It will enhance a sentence for any subsequent DUI charge.
- Wet reckless charges and DUI charges are treated equally by insurance companies, so your insurance premiums will go higher. The insurance provider may even cancel your policy.
Contact Attorney Brian Sloan