As is the case in other states, people living in Colorado under the age of 21 face stiffer penalties for drinking and driving. These stricter rules may affect college students attending Colorado State or other colleges and universities.
People who are under 21 are subject to the same penalties for DUI and DWAI as are other people who are of legal drinking age.
So, for example, if someone under 21 gets caught driving with a .08 blood alcohol content, then he or she will face a license suspension of 9 months. Additionally, the accused can receive a sentence of 2 to 180 days in jail as well as fines and community service. These penalties assume it is a person’s first offense and there are no aggravating circumstances.
Additionally, people under 21 can face penalties for driving even if their blood alcohol content is much lower, as low as .02.
For a first offense, someone caught driving under 21 with between .02 and .05 BAC will face a 3-month license suspension. Additional offenses mean longer license suspensions.
The first offense for drinking and driving under 21 is a traffic ticket that could result in community service or a fine.
However, the state will punish subsequent offenses as traffic misdemeanors and can lead to at least 10 days and up to 90 days in jail, although the judge may be able to suspend part of the sentence. Fines of up to $300 are possible.
It is important to remember that a blood alcohol content of .05 may face a full-blown DWAI charge, especially if the police also allege that the person was driving erratically or exhibiting drunken behavior.