Are There Different Types of DUI Charges in Denver?

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A DUI, or driving under the influence of alcohol, is not the only possible criminal charge for impaired or intoxicated driving.

In this video, former Deputy District Attorney and Denver DUI lawyer Will Smith explains the different types of criminal charges a person may face after being pulled over under suspicion of impaired driving. All criminal charges can greatly impact a person’s life, which is why it is well worth it to hire experienced DUI defense lawyers as soon as possible. At Thomas Law Firm, a number of our drunk driving lawyers were former district attorneys who have experience on both the prosecution and defense sides of the law.

Video Transcription:

In Colorado we have a couple different levels, if you will, of impaired and intoxicated driving. The first, the one that everyone’s probably most familiar, is DUI, driving under the influence of alcohol. That really just means that you’re operating a motor vehicle and your ability to operate that motor vehicle is substantially impaired by the influence of drugs, alcohol, or a combination of both.
In Colorado we also have a per se DUI. A lot of people are familiar with this per se. If you operate a motor vehicle, and within two hours of driving a motor vehicle your blood test is over a .08, so that’s a .08, then you are deemed to be substantially incapable of operating a motor vehicle, and a jury should make a presumption that you are in fact DUI.

Now in Colorado we have a lesser included offense, which is driving while ability impaired, commonly referred to as DWAI. Now there’s also a presumption that’s lower than a .08 for DWAI. That’s a .05. If you’re over a .05 within two hours of driving, the jury may infer that you are at least impaired to the slightest degree. DWAI does not mean that you’re substantially impaired.

It just means that you’re impaired even to the slightest degree to operate a motor vehicle. If you’ve been charged with a crime, especially a DUI, check out our website at

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