When you need an attorney, ours will provide straight talk and sincere service.
More than 20 years of experience in tenaciously defending Black Hills clients against criminal charges of DUI, drug crimes, assault and more.  

Litigation and productive negotiation of issues involving injury, property, contracts, businesses and estates.  

South Dakota is one of the worst states for drunk driving

On Behalf of | Mar 28, 2024 | DUI |

With a high rate of drunk drivers, the statistics on road safety paint a stark picture of the challenges South Dakota residents face. The state has strict rules to combat this issue.

You can face serious consequences if an officer charges you with driving under the influence. Knowing the laws concerning DUIs can help you defend yourself.

Alarming statistics

In 2024, South Dakota ranked as the second worst state for drunk driving incidents. According to a recent study, intoxicated drivers in South Dakota accounted for over a third of traffic fatalities in this state.

Efforts to reduce these numbers are ongoing and involve law enforcement, legislation and community education. The state has the highest number of DUI arrests per 100,000 licensed drivers.

Sturgis bike rally

A significant event that often draws attention to South Dakota’s drunk driving dilemma is the annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. This iconic gathering, which attracts thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts from across the country, presents a unique set of challenges. With the influx of visitors and festivities, there is a heightened risk of alcohol-related accidents during this event.

Legal penalties

A first offense for a DUI can result in up to $1,000 in fines, jail time of up to one year and 30 days of lost driving privileges. Data shows that many DUI arrests are of repeat offenders. Repeated convictions can lead to up to two years in prison, license revocation for at least a year and up to $4,000 in fines. Courts may require drivers to get alcohol and drug evaluations or complete chemical dependency programs.

Defense options

If you face DUI charges, you need to understand your rights. Some common defense strategies you can follow are:

  • Challenge whether the traffic stop is valid
  • Dispute the results of chemical tests
  • Question whether the field sobriety tests are accurate
  • Prove improper arrest or violation of rights

Medical conditions could also affect your defense strategy. In some cases, you can bargain for a lesser charge.

Approach your case with diligence and awareness to minimize the possible consequences of a DUI charge in South Dakota.