In the early morning hours of Wednesday, October 24, Bobby Brown was arrested in Los Angeles on suspicion of DUI. An LAPD police spokesman reported that the officer who stopped Brown smelled a "strong odor of alcohol" when he approached Brown's car. No information about his blood alcohol level has been released. Brown was released from jail about seven hours later after posting $25,000 bail. His next court date is set for November 16. Brown was arrested in March of this year for DUI and later pled no contest to driving while his blood alcohol level was above .08%. Brown rose to fame in the 1980's as a member of New Edition before leaving the group to begin a successful solo career. As his singing career faded, Brown became more well known for his bad behavior and his marriage to the late Whitney Houston.
Punishment for a second DUI in California
Since this is Brown's second DUI arrest this year, the DA will likely charge the case and seek punishment as a second DUI. Anyone in California who is convicted of a DUI within 10 years of their last DUI conviction will be charged with a "second DUI." A second DUI is a misdemeanor, but it carries a mandatory minimum of 10 days in jail and a maximum of one year in county jail. In Sonoma County, sentences for a second DUI are typically between 30 and 45 days. Brown is still on informal court probation for his first DUI, so he also faces a violation of probation that could add more jail time to his sentence if convicted. Brown was convicted of a DUI in Georgia in 1996, but because that conviction is more than 10 years old, this new arrest cannot be legally considered a "third" in California. However, the DA and judge may consider that case and a string of other legal troubles when setting a sentence.
Brown faces a longer DUI class and license suspension
If Brown is convicted of a second DUI, he will be ordered to enroll in and complete the Multiple Offender DUI program, which is 18 months long. The DMV will suspend his driver's license for at least one year and will not reinstate it until he completes the Multiple Offender DUI program. The court can also order Brown to install an ignition interlock device on any car that he owns or operates. An ignition interlock device requires the driver of the car to breathe into a machine to assure that there is no alcohol in the driver's system before the engine can be started.
For more information about DUIs, their defense, and sentences, contact a Santa Rosa DUI lawyer.