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California DUI With a Child in the Vehicle

A large percentage of adults living in Southern California are parents. Considering the fact that parents are no longer leaving their young children home alone like they did in the 1980s and earlier, a considerable amount of children are found riding in the back of their parents’ vehicles when they are arrested for driving under the influence (DUI).

It’s hard to fully understand how alcohol affects the body, we get it. For that reason alone, every day parents enjoy a couple of beers at a family barbeque or a glass of wine or two at dinner, then thinking that they “are fine,” load up the family in the car and head back home.

Unfortunately, what parents don’t realize is that drinking and driving with their children in the vehicle is frowned upon by local law enforcement and state legislators. In fact, if a parent or other adult is arrested for drinking and driving with a child in the vehicle, they will face child endangerment charges in addition to standard DUI charges.

Continue reading as we explain what California’s law has to say about DUI and child endangerment.

DUI and Child Endangerment Charges

Child endangerment is covered under Section 273(a) of the California Penal Code. Child endangerment is called a “wobbler” offense, meaning it can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the facts of the case.

Under Section 273(a), any person who, under any circumstances that are likely to cause great bodily injury or death to a child, willfully causes or permits a child to be in a situation where their health is endangered, shall be charged with child endangerment.

  • As a misdemeanor, child endangerment is punishable by up to one year in the county jail.
  • As a felony, child endangerment is punishable by two, four, or six years in prison.

If you are a parent and you are facing DUI and child endangerment charges in Orange County, it’s especially critical that you seek a strong defense. At the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, Inc., we understand that your family is at stake and we will do everything we can to help fight your charges and mitigate the consequences that you face.

Protect your future and your family by contacting our Orange County DUI defense firm today!