A Laguna Niguel man gave an entirely new meaning to the idea of wedding crashing and will spend the next three years in state prison after crashing his SUV and getting a DUI hours after tying the knot with his wife at the county courthouse. Christopher Paul Shore was arrested on July 7th 2011 after pulling his SUV across 4 lanes of traffic on the I-5, down an embankment and into a tree. His new bride was injured in the car wreck and Shore was charged with felony drunk driving.
Why it took just under a year for this case to reach sentencing isn’t entirely clear, but when the judge hearing the case found out that Shore has 4 other misdemeanor DUI convictions (the wedding day DUI was number 5), she deemed him to be a danger to society and threw the book at him.
Once an individual gets their 4th DUI in a ten year period, the DUI becomes a “wobbler”. This means that prosecutors have the option to charge the DUI as either a misdemeanor or a felony. A felony conviction carries a maximum of 3 years in prison, which is exactly what Shore got. Shore will also have his driver’s license revoked for 4 years by the California DMV.
A misdemeanor conviction of a 4th or more DUI carries a maximum sentence of 1 year in county jail. As you can see the difference between a felony and misdemeanor conviction is massive, and requires the services of an expert California DUI attorney to get you the best possible result in your case.