Yes, in many jurisdictions, including New York, a DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) charge can be more severe if there was a child in the car at the time of the offense. This is often referred to as “aggravated DWI with a child” or a similar term, and it typically results in enhanced penalties compared to a standard DWI charge.
The specific penalties for DWI with a child in the car can vary depending on the jurisdiction and the circumstances of the case, but they commonly include:
- Increased fines: The fines for DWI with a child passenger are often higher than those for a standard DWI.
- Longer license suspension: Your driver’s license may be suspended for a longer period if you are convicted of DWI with a child in the car.
- Mandatory ignition interlock device: You may be required to install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle, which prevents the car from starting if alcohol is detected on your breath.
- Enhanced jail time: In some cases, the presence of a child in the vehicle can result in a longer jail sentence or mandatory minimum sentences.
- Child endangerment charges: In addition to DWI charges, you may also face charges related to child endangerment or child abuse, which can carry their own penalties.
Driving under the influence with a child passenger is taken very seriously due to the potential danger it poses to the child, and the legal consequences can be significant.