Kansas has very tough DUI laws and penalties for anyone convicted of driving drunk. Those penalties increase dramatically if you are convicted of causing bodily injuries as a result of driving drunk.
If you or a loved one were accused of driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs, and of causing personal injury in an accident or crash, then you should explore your best options with a DUI defense attorney as soon as possible.
Aggravated Battery While Driving Under the Influence
A recently enacted law in Kansas attempts to combine strict liability with DUI where an accident causing bodily injury occurs. It is called Aggravated Battery while Driving Under the Influence. Kansas criminal code generally defines aggravated battery as knowingly causing bodily harm -or great bodily harm, to another person or disfigurement of another person.
The legislature has added the following under Aggravated Battery:
(3) (A)committing an act described in K.S.A. 8-1567, and amendments thereto, when great bodily harm to another person or disfigurement of another person results from such act; or (B) committing an act described in K.S.A. 8-1567, and amendments thereto, when bodily harm to another person results from such act under circumstances whereby great bodily harm, disfigurement or death can result from such act. (K.S.A. 21-5413).
K.S.A. 8-1567 as referenced in the above is the penal code for DUI laws. What this all means is that if a prosecutor charges a driver with aggravated battery while DUI, they may not have to prove what actually caused the bodily injury. It might be enough to prove that the driver was impaired. If the prosecution is successful in proving your BAC level or impairment, you will face serious jail time, fines and other penalties under this charge at sentencing.
However, applying strict liability to a DUI injury case is relatively unchartered territory for Kansas courts. This makes securing a highly experienced and local DUI defense attorney critical to the outcome of the case.
Important: No one can enter a Diversion Agreement if they are charged with causing an injury while DUI, not even first-time offenders.
DUI accidents that cause property damage will also involve restitution at sentencing. This means that if you are convicted, the court will order you to pay the victim/s for the monetary damages you caused. For a chart on all other monetary penalties you face if convicted of a DUI, see Felony DUI Penalties.
What You Can Do Now
Any driver accused of aggravated battery DUI needs to take timely action to secure a local and experienced criminal defense attorney. DUI accident defense is very complex work that requires exceptional skills and resources to fully defend.
Your lawyer will need to get the most accurate and comprehensive information from you while all of the details are still fresh in your mind. He or she may need time to gather evidence from the accident scene and vehicles involved, and from witnesses. This is in addition to getting evidence from the arresting officers at the scene.
The criminal defense team at Norton Hare is well-equipped to defend complex DUI cases. Our experienced attorneys have successful track records defending clients accused of DUI accidents in Johnson County, Olathe, Overland Park, Lenexa, Shawnee, Prairie Village, Kansas City, Lawrence and elsewhere in Kansas.
Call now for a free consultation with one of our highly qualified defense attorneys: 913-906-9633