One drunk driving incident can be a big deal, but just enough to make an offender know they may be headed down a dangerous road. A second offense is what really triggers stricter penalties. Those penalties may depend on the time that has passed between first and second offenses; the look-back period. As such, a second Missouri DWI only counts if that offense occurs within five years of the first DWI conviction.
Consequences for a second Missouri DWI include:
- Class A misdemeanor criminal record.
- Up to one year in jail.
- Up to $1,000 in fines.
- One-year driver’s license revocation.
In some ways, the look-back period gives an offender with a second Missouri DWI a second chance, at least when it comes to less restrictive consequences in court. Any second offense outside of the look-back period will be treated as a first-time offense. However, the look-back period does not mean the first conviction is removed from your criminal record or driving record; you will still have consequences like a mandatory ignition interlock installation requirement and you will have 12 points added to your Missouri driver’s license. If the offenses are within the look-back period, you will also face a five-year driver’s license denial.
Be careful with that second DWI charge – any agreement to expunge a first-time Missouri DWI from your record will no longer be valid, and you will face the full consequences of both incidents. Also, any additional drunk driving charge, even outside of Missouri, will count in the full tally of incidents.
The line between how severe drunk driving consequences seems to be the look-back period, but it really is our intention to get home safely at the end of a night. Knowing your DWI timeline is much less important than just making better choices to keep you out of the courtroom, and back home where you want to be.