A “wet reckless” in Vista Courts and throughout California is a lesser charge often used in plea bargaining in DUI cases that are weak or have problems. It is described generally in California Vehicle Code (VC) 23103(a) per VC 23103.5 driving recklessly with alcohol in your system. This is not admitting to driving under the influence or over the legal limit. Regardless whether you were actually driving recklessly, it is used as a lesser charge. The penalties are much less, however, it still stays on your DMV record for 10 years and counts as a prior for purposes of greater penalties for any future DUI convictiions. It has no effect on any DMV alcohol suspension, DMV actions are separate.
The penalties for a wet reckless are less than a DUI and because it is not a DUI it can make a difference for employment, the military and in other areas. It still carries 2 points for purposes of you driving record like a DUI. The penalties include 3 years informal probation instead of the ususal 5 years on a DUI and minimum fines with assessments are about $1200 versus $2100 for a DUI. You still must attend the 3 month DUI program, unless you were under a .08, then a 12 hour program may be available. Generally there is no custody or public work, but there can be.
There are other lesser charges that may be available in negotiations, but usually there needs to be even more significant issues to be able to resolve a case with those. Even a “wet reckless” can be difficult to get, there are a number of factors that need to be addressed during negotiations. Christoph Law Offices have handled over 3000 DUIs over more than 30 years across from Vista Courts. Call us for a free consultation at 760-941-5720.