DC DUI Victim Impact Panels
A Victim Impact Panel can be a condition of a negotiated resolution in a DUI case with prosecutors. They are frequently a condition of a probationary period imposed by a judge after a person is convicted of a DUI. Completing a Victim Impact Panel is sometimes a helpful part of negotiations between a person’s DC DUI attorney and a prosecutor to negotiate for reduced penalties, or in some circumstances, a complete dismissal of all charges.
Role of Victim Impact Panels
When a person is arrested and charged with DUI, they might be required to complete a Victim Impact Panel as a result of their conviction. A Victim Impact Panel is a panel discussion held by organizations consisting of people affected by drinking and driving. Most frequently, the organization Mothers Against Drunk Driving is responsible for setting up and conducting Victim Impact Panels.
With a Victim Impact Panel, a person charged or convicted with a DUI listens to a group of individuals who may have had family members or friends injured or killed by someone who was drinking and driving. The defendant listens to the panelists tell their stories about how someone they know was affected by drinking and driving.
Typically, a Victim Impact Panel lasts for about one hour and is held in various locations in every state in the country. They are typically held at least once a month at conference centers, office spaces, or churches and usually cost less than $50. A person attending receives a certificate or a signed completion record indicating they attended the Victim Impact Panel.
Impact Panels in DC
In Washington DC, the completion of a Victim Impact Panel is sometimes a prerequisite for a negotiated resolution with prosecutors. It can also be a requirement imposed by a judge as a condition of probation after a person has been convicted of driving under the influence.
Victim Impact Panels are usually held in DC once a month. It is important for a person facing a DUI charge to discuss with their defense attorney the benefits of attending a Victim Impact Panel and how it can assist them in resolving their case favorably.
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