The Vermont Statutes Online

Title 23: Motor Vehicles

Chapter 13: OPERATION OF VEHICLES

Sub-Chapter 13: Drunken Driving

23 V.S.A. § 1210. Penalties



§ 1210. Penalties

(a) Screening. Before sentencing a defendant under this section, the court may order that the defendant submit to an alcohol assessment screening. Such a screening report may be considered at sentencing in the same manner as a presentence report. At sentencing, the defendant may present relevant evidence, including the results of any independent alcohol assessment which was conducted at the person's own expense. Evidence regarding any such screening or an alcohol assessment performed at the expense of the defendant shall not be admissible for any other purpose without the defendant's consent.

(b) First offense. A person who violates section 1201 of this title may be fined not more than $750.00, or imprisoned for not more than two years, or both.

(c) Second offense. A person convicted of violating section 1201 of this title who has been convicted of another violation of that section shall be fined not more than $1,500.00 or imprisoned not more than two years, or both. At least 200 hours of community service shall be performed, or 60 consecutive hours of the sentence of imprisonment shall be served and may not be suspended or deferred or served as a supervised sentence, except that credit for a sentence of imprisonment may be received for time served in a residential alcohol facility pursuant to sentence if the program is successfully completed.

(d) Third offense. A person convicted of violating section 1201 of this title who has previously been convicted two times of a violation of that section shall be fined not more than $2,500.00 or imprisoned not more than five years, or both. At least 96 consecutive hours of the sentence of imprisonment shall be served and may not be suspended or deferred or served as a supervised sentence, except that credit for a sentence of imprisonment may be received for time served in a residential alcohol facility pursuant to sentence if the program is successfully completed. The court may impose a sentence that does not include a term of imprisonment or that does not require that the 96 hours of imprisonment be served consecutively only if the court makes written findings on the record that such a sentence will serve the interests of justice and public safety.

(e)(1) Fourth or subsequent offense. A person convicted of violating section 1201 of this title who has previously been convicted three or more times of a violation of that section shall be fined not more than $5,000.00 or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both. At least 192 consecutive hours of the sentence of imprisonment shall be served and may not be suspended or deferred or served as a supervised sentence, except that credit for a sentence of imprisonment may be received for time served in a residential alcohol treatment facility pursuant to sentence if the program is successfully completed. The court shall not impose a sentence that does not include a term of imprisonment unless the court makes written findings on the record that there are compelling reasons why such a sentence will serve the interests of justice and public safety.

(2) The Department of Corrections shall provide alcohol and substance abuse treatment, when appropriate, to any person convicted of a violation of this subsection.

(f)(1) Death resulting. If the death of any person results from a violation of section 1201 of this title, the person convicted of the violation shall be fined not more than $10,000.00 or imprisoned not less than one year nor more than 15 years, or both. The provisions of this subsection do not limit or restrict prosecutions for manslaughter.

(2) If the death of more than one person results from a violation of section 1201 of this title, the operator may be convicted of a separate violation of this subdivision for each decedent.

(3)(A) Death resulting; third or subsequent offense. If the death of any person results from a violation of section 1201 of this title and the person convicted of the violation previously has been convicted two or more times of a violation of that section, a sentence ordered pursuant to this subsection shall, except as provided in subdivision (B) of this subdivision (3), include at least a five-year term of imprisonment. The five-year minimum term of imprisonment required by this subdivision shall be served and may not be suspended, deferred, or served as a supervised sentence. The defendant shall not be eligible for probation, parole, furlough, or any other type of early release until the expiration of the five-year term of imprisonment.

(B) Notwithstanding subdivision (A) of this subdivision (3), if the death of any person results from a violation of section 1201 of this title and the person convicted of the violation previously has been convicted two or more times of a violation of that section, the court may impose a sentence that does not include a term of imprisonment or which includes a term of imprisonment of less than five years if the court makes written findings on the record that such a sentence will serve the interests of justice and public safety.

(g)(1) Injury resulting. If serious bodily injury, as defined in 13 V.S.A. § 1021(2), results to any person other than the operator from a violation of section 1201 of this title, the person convicted of the violation shall be fined not more than $5,000.00, or imprisoned not more than 15 years, or both.

(2) If serious bodily injury as defined in 13 V.S.A. § 1021(2) results to more than one person other than the operator from a violation of section 1201 of this title, the operator may be convicted of a separate violation of this subdivision for each person injured.

(3)(A) Injury resulting; third or subsequent offense. If serious bodily injury as defined in 13 V.S.A. § 1021(2) results to any person other than the operator from a violation of section 1201 of this title and the person convicted of the violation previously has been convicted two or more times of a violation of section 1201, a sentence ordered pursuant to this subsection shall, except as provided in subdivision (B) of this subdivision (3), include at least a five-year term of imprisonment. The five-year minimum term of imprisonment required by this subdivision shall be served and may not be suspended, deferred, or served as a supervised sentence. The defendant shall not be eligible for probation, parole, furlough, or any other type of early release until the expiration of the five-year term of imprisonment.

(B) Notwithstanding subdivision (A) of this subdivision (3), if serious bodily injury as defined in 13 V.S.A. § 1021(2) results to any person other than the operator from a violation of section 1201 of this title and the person convicted of the violation previously has been convicted two or more times of a violation of section 1201, the court may impose a sentence that does not include a term of imprisonment or which includes a term of imprisonment of less than five years if the court makes written findings on the record that such a sentence will serve the interests of justice and public safety.

(h) Determination of fines. In determining appropriate fines under this section, the court may take into account the total cost to a defendant of alcohol screening, participation in the alcohol and driving education program and therapy, and the income of the defendant.

(i) A person convicted of violating section 1201 of this title shall be assessed a surcharge of $60.00, which shall be added to any fine imposed by the court. The court shall collect and transfer such surcharge to the Department of Public Safety for deposit in the Blood and Breath Alcohol Testing Special Fund established by section 1220b of this title.

(j) A person convicted of violating section 1201 of this title shall be assessed a surcharge of $50.00, which shall be added to any fine or surcharge imposed by the court. The court shall collect and transfer the surcharge assessed under this subsection to the Office of Defender General for deposit in the Public Defender Special Fund specifying the source of the monies being deposited. The collection procedures described in 13 V.S.A. § 5240 shall be utilized in the collection of this surcharge.

(k) A person convicted of violating section 1201 of this title shall be assessed a surcharge of $50.00, which shall be added to any fine or surcharge imposed by the court. The court shall collect and transfer the surcharge assessed under this subsection to be credited to the DUI Enforcement Fund. The collection procedures described in 13 V.S.A. § 5240 shall be utilized in the collection of this surcharge. (Added 1969, No. 267 (Adj. Sess.), § 10; amended 1973, No. 79, § 8, eff. May 23, 1973; 1975, No. 103, § 6, eff. May 30, 1975; 1977, No. 101, § 1, eff. May 6, 1977; 1981, No. 205 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1983, No. 134 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 1989, No. 68, § 7, eff. Dec. 1, 1989; 1991, No. 55, § 9; 1991, No. 234 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1993, No. 25, § 25, eff. May 18, 1993; 1995, No. 77 (Adj. Sess.), § 11, eff. March 21, 1996; 1997, No. 117 (Adj. Sess.), § 27; 1999, No. 160 (Adj. Sess.), § 21; 2007, No. 195 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; 2011, No. 56, § 5; 2011, No. 56, § 17, eff. March 1, 2012.)