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Criminal Vehicular Operation Lawyer MN

The assertive Minnesota attorney to defend you against criminal vehicular operation.

Trusted defense counsel for clients in Scott and Dakota Counties and throughout the State of Minnesota.

The open road is anything but predictable and safe, especially during Minnesota winters when driving conditions become extreme and perilous. If you are involved in an accident, you most likely will not face serious criminal charges — unless you have been consuming any amount of alcohol or controlled substances. Brent S. Schafer, a reputable Minnesota criminal defense attorney with an office location in Savage, has more than 23 years of experience and has tried dozens of jury trials to verdict, as well as attended several hundred court trials and contest motion hearings. He has spent his career inside the courtroom and is a proven, determined litigator defending clients charged with injury and homicide as a result of an alcohol-related accident.


What are Minnesota penalties for criminal vehicular operation?

Minnesota laws harshly penalize people who cause accidents while driving under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol. Lengthy prison sentences are required for those who drive while impaired and cause an accident resulting in death. Although these offenses are not intentional, the police and prosecutors often treat the offenders as hardened criminals and prosecute each of them to the fullest extent of the law.

In Minnesota, 10 separate acts could result in your being charged with a criminal vehicular operation offense. The level of offense is determined by the extent of injury caused by the driving conduct. The penalties range from gross misdemeanor to felony. Minnesota has four penalty levels for criminal vehicular operation:

  • A person charged with criminal vehicular operation and causes the death of a human or of an unborn child may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 10 years or to payment of a fine of not more than $20,000, or both.
  • A person charged with criminal vehicular operation that causes great bodily harm to another person or to an unborn child may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than five years or to payment of a fine of not more than $10,000, or both.
  • A person charged with criminal vehicular operation that causes substantial bodily harm to another person may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than three years or to payment of a fine of not more than $10,000, or both.
  • A person who violates subdivision 1 and causes bodily harm to another may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than one year or to payment of a fine of not more than $3,000, or both.

A person can be charged with criminal vehicular operation even if the only person injured is a passenger in that person’s vehicle. In addition to lengthy jail sentences, fines and restitution for damages, a conviction for criminal vehicular operation can carry up to a 10-year loss of driving privileges. Furthermore, if someone dies, you may be charged with vehicular homicide. Brent S. Schafer provides immediate and experienced counsel to clients charged with any type of vehicular homicide offense. He thoroughly understands the complexities of how Minnesota classifies various homicide offenses and can build the best defense on your behalf.