If you are ever pulled over and charged with drinking and driving in South Dakota, you can expect to have to forfeit your license for somewhere between 30 days and a year. You may find yourself charged with the crime if you blow into a Breathalzyer and it shows your blood alcohol content to be above the legal limit of 0.08 percent.
You may, too, face a DUI charge with a lower BAC (though it cannot fall below 0.05 percent) if the law enforcement official who administers yours tests is given the impression you are impaired. As you might imagine, the penalties for drinking and driving increase with each subsequent offense.
A second-time offense
Second-time DUI offenders in South Dakota face a mandatory license suspension for at least a year. The charge is also considered a misdemeanor offense.
A third-time offense
If you are charged and convicted of drinking and driving in South Dakota for a third time, the charge becomes a felony, as opposed to a misdemeanor. Felonies are permanent, and they can hinder your ability to find a place to live, work and more. In addition to any jail time you may have to serve, you can also expect to lose your driving privileges for at least a year. Should you be caught driving during the period in which your license is revoked, you may be sent back to prison at least 10 days.
A fourth-time offense
If you are charged and convicted of driving under the influence in South Dakota for a fourth time and already have a felony on your record, the charge elevates to a Class 5 felony. Additionally, your license will again be revoked for a minimum of two years, beginning from either the day your punishment is handed down or the day you get out of jail. If you are pulled over for driving without a license during that time, you can expect to have to return to jail for 20 days in addition to other penalties you may face.
A fifth or more offense
When you already have a Class 5 felony DUI charge and are convicted for a fifth time (or sixth, seventh and so on), your conviction is a Class 4 felony charge, your license will also be taken away again for, at minimum, a three-year period. As is the case with a fourth DUI charge, you face at least 20 more days in jail if you are caught driving during that period of revocation.
Drunk driving carries penalties that can considerably impact your day-to-day life, including your abilities to work and socialize. If you are charged with the offense, you may want to speak with an attorney.