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Searsport Maine OUI / DUI Attorneys

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OUI / DUI Defense Lawyers in Searsport, ME

Searsport DUI OUI Lawyers in Maine

Searsport is a small town located along the coastline of central Maine, just south of Bangor. With a population of 2,615 in the 2010 census, Searsport is one of the many small, quaint towns lining Maine’s gorgeous rocky coastline. Searsport has a long and rich history as a maritime center, going as far back as the 18th century.

Home to the second-deepest port in the entire northeast, behind only eastern Maine’s Eastport, Searsport was a ship-building hub in the 1800s, with no fewer than 17 shipyards calling its port home.

During this time, Searsport was also the source of 10% of the country’s deep water shipping captains, despite its small population. While this reputation has slipped in recent decades into the renowned Penobscot Marine Museum, Searsport is still one of the busiest ports in the northeast.

As a blue collar, shipping town located far from Maine’s affluent southern tip, Searsport’s median household income is $25,647, barely half as much as the state’s average.

This translates into property crime rates that are higher than typical for Maine, though still lower than the national average. However, violent crimes are still nearly unheard of in Searsport, following the Maine norm.

Searsport Court Location

If you get pulled over and charged for operating under the influence (OUI / DUI) in Searsport, Maine, your case will be heard by the courts in the nearby town of Belfast, Maine.

For details on the two courthouses in Belfast, as well as parking information and details about the courtrooms, please see our Belfast OUI / DUI defense page for more information.

Prosecutors

The district attorney in charge of prosecuting criminal charges filed in Searsport and the rest of Waldo County is Geoffery Rushlau. Mr. Rushlau is also in charge of Sagadahoc, Lincoln, and Knox counties, as well, giving him the largest jurisdiction in the entire state of Maine. He has served in his position since 1993, making him the second-longest tenured district attorney in Maine, behind only Cumberland County’s Stephanie Anderson. However, Mr. Rushlau only won his seventh term by an incredibly slim margin.

Unfortunately, Mr. Rushlau has a tough stance on OUI charges. However, his assistant district attorneys have a lot of experience, and he typically gives them a significant amount of discretion to drop charges down to a lesser offense without his prior approval. As a result, negotiations for OUI charges in Searsport are possible, and can lead to resolutions without a trial; as long as you have the right attorney.

OUI / DUI Penalties in Searsport

If the OUI investigation gathers strong evidence of an OUI crime, you could end up getting convicted on drunk driving or drugged driving charges. The penalties of an OUI conviction have been increasing over time as politicians try outdoing each other to cater to special interest groups that want to punish drunk drivers. As a result, the sanctions for an OUI conviction, even one that does not involve a crash or injury, are shockingly high for the severity of the crime:

No. of Offense (Last 10 Years) License Suspension Jail Time Minimum Fine
1st Offense 150 Days No Minimum $500
2nd Offense 3 Years 7 Days $700
3rd Offense 6 Years 30 Days $1,100
4th Offense 8 Years 6 Months $2,100

These penalties increase if there are aggravating factors. For example:

  • If you refuse to take a chemical BAC test like a blood test or a breathalyzer, you will spend at least 96 hours in jail and 275 days will get added to the license suspension.
  • If you had a passenger under 21 years old in the car, there will be a minimum jail sentence of 48 hours and the license suspension will be 275 days longer.
  • If you try fleeing police, had a BAC of 0.15% or higher, or were driving more than 30 miles per hour over the speed limit, there is a minimum 48-hour jail sentence.

There can also be severe collateral consequences of an OUI conviction. Finding a job can get more difficult with the blemish on your criminal history, and keeping your current one while dealing with the license suspension can be tough.

Defending Against an OUI / DUI in Searsport

Searsport Maine Operating Under the Influence (OUI / DUI) LawyersThere are several ways you can defend against an OUI charge in Maine. Raising whatever defense is available to you is essential if you want to avoid these serious penalties of a conviction:

  • There was no probable cause for the traffic stop. Police need to have probable cause to search for evidence or make an arrest. Because a traffic stop is a type of arrest, police need to have probable cause to believe that a crime is being committed. While they do not necessarily have to think that the crime is OUI, police have to suspect something. They cannot just pull people over for no reason. If they do, the evidence they find can be excluded from court.
  • BAC or field sobriety tests were improperly given. BAC tests are not foolproof. They have to be calibrated and administered properly. If they aren’t, the readings they provide can be inaccurate and innocent people can get into legal trouble. Field sobriety tests are even less reliable. Police can even manipulate them so drivers are more likely to fail.

Contact an OUI / DUI lawyer in Searsport today

Like in the rest of Maine, OUI charges are serious matters in Searsport. The penalties for an OUI conviction are serious, and can include hefty fines, a lengthy license suspension, and possibly even jail time.

Turnover amongst Mr. Rushlau’s assistant district attorneys has been relatively low and these are dedicated prosecutors who will hold you and your attorney’s collective feet to the fire if you approach the case from the wrong “angle”. Don’t make the mistake of retaining an inexperienced defense attorney who is unfamiliar with this particular group of prosecutors.

Having an experienced OUI / DUI defense attorney like William T. Bly on your side before, during, and after your trial can be the difference between an outcome you can handle, and one you can’t.

Call The Maine Criminal Defense Group at (207) 571-8146 or contact us directly online.

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