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Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol in Ohio can cost you your driving privileges, your hard-earned money, and possibly even your freedom. If you are facing these types of charges, reach out to Patituce & Associates, LLC for help. We know what it takes to mount a solid defense on your behalf against these charges. Contact us to learn more about how our Akron DUI defense lawyers can help.

What Is OVI in Ohio?

While many states refer to driving a vehicle while intoxicated by drugs or alcohol as a DUI or DWI, the term in Ohio is operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs (OVI). You can face OVI charges if you are operating a vehicle and are found to have a blood alcohol concentration or certain concentrations of drugs in your breath or urine near the time of operating the vehicle. 

What Happens After an OVI Arrest in Ohio?

Immediately after you are arrested for OVI in Ohio, the law enforcement officer can take your driver’s license. You only have a few days to fight the suspension of your driving privileges, which is handled at a separate administrative hearing. This hearing is separate from the criminal case against you. At Patituce & Associates, LLC, our Akron criminal defense lawyers can assist with both administrative and criminal proceedings. 

What Penalties Can I Face If I’m Charged with OVI?

The first conviction for an OVI in Ohio is a first-degree misdemeanor. If convicted, you can be forced to serve a mandatory jail time of three days, up to six months, depending on the circumstances. You can also be required to pay hefty fines.  Penalties increase with additional convictions, which can result in a variety of consequences, including:

  • Incarceration of ten days to five years
  • Fines of $350 to $10,000
  • Requirement of attending and paying for a drug and alcohol abuse program
  • The requirement to have an ignition interlock device installed in your vehicle, which requires upfront payment and ongoing expenses for monitoring
  • Loss of driving privileges

While many people think a DUI conviction will “roll off” their record, this is not true. Law enforcement officers can still see this conviction on your record. Additionally, the court can look back as far as 20 years to see if you have been convicted of a prior OVI offense when sentencing you. 

Possible Defenses to DUI Charges

At Patituce & Associates, LLC, we dedicate about half of our caseload to defending people accused of OVI and related offenses. As former prosecutors, our criminal defense lawyers know how the other side thinks and how to leverage vulnerabilities in their case. 

Some ways we may be able to challenge the evidence against you is by:

  • Showing there was a plausible reason why you tested above the legal limit, such as a medical condition that changes the way your body absorbs and breaks down alcohol
  • Proving the law enforcement officer who stopped you did not follow proper field sobriety testing protocols
  • Questioning whether the chain of evidence was broken
  • Proving the breathalyzer machine had not been properly maintained or calibrated
  • Questioning the lab technicians who were responsible for processing evidence in your case and their collection and testing methods
  • Challenging the constitutionality of the stop that resulted in your arrest

Contact Our Lawyers for a Confidential Case Review  

At Patituce & Associates, LLC, we know effective ways to defend individuals charged with OVI. Give us a call at (440) 471-7784 for your free case consultation.