Boating While Drunk Is A Crime
Each year, people flock to South Carolina’s coast and waterways to enjoy boating, water skiing and other water sports. For many people, this pastime also involves alcohol use. If a police officer has probable cause to believe the operator of a vessel is impaired by alcohol or drugs, the operator may be arrested for boating under the influence (BUI).
Penalties for boating under the influence include fines of up to $6,000 and up to three years in prison. You may also lose your privilege to operate any vessel for up to two years and be required to complete a South Carolina boating safety course at your own expense.
Just as penalties for DUI get more severe with each past offense, BUI may also be charged as a felony in certain circumstances.
Put An Experienced Lawyer Between You And The Accusations
At the Law Office of Jonathan M. Harvey, I help people mitigate the damage of criminal charges. If you have been accused of boating while impaired, I can help. With office in Columbia, I have been practicing criminal law in South Carolina for more than 35 years.
If you are operating a boat on the water, you are considered to have given “implied consent” to a chemical test or analysis of your blood alcohol content (BAC). However, law enforcement officials and prosecuting attorneys are regulated by strict standards for taking, handling and interpreting this evidence. I will make sure no harmful evidence is presented in your case if it was collected unlawfully or handled improperly.