Normally, a DUI is a misdemeanor. This is the typical case up until a person’s fourth DUI within 10 years, when it becomes a felony. However, there are certain situations that can make even a DUI a felony. If your DUI leads to an accident where other people are injured or killed, even a first time DUI can be charged as a felony. The second way a DUI can be a felony is if you have a previous felony DUI on your record. Felony DUIs carry stiffer penalties than misdemeanor DUIs. A felony DUI can carry a sentence of 1 to 3 years in prison.
KSBW reports on a woman arrested for DUI after a wrong-way accident that claimed a teen’s life.
28-year-old Ashley Marie Oliver was driving northbound in the southbound lanes of Highway 17. A police officer spotter Oliver and turned around to pursue her, but she crashed head-on into another vehicle before he could catch up to her.
Oliver was driving a Chrysler minivan and hit a Toyota Corolla that was carrying five teenagers, including 16-year-old Armando Canales. Canales died at the scene. Three other teenagers in the Corolla were taken to the hospital with serious but non-life-threatening injuries.
Canales was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the accident. He was a football player for Washington High.
Oliver was arrested on charges of felony driving under the influence and vehicular manslaughter after being released from the hospital.