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The Consequences of a Wet Reckless Charge


If you have been arrested for a DUI/OVI, you may have the ability to plead your case and receive lesser charges. Called a “wet reckless” charge, Ohio drivers may be able to take advantage of a plea bargain for the less serious charge. Commonly, a wet reckless charge is offered when the driver’s blood alcohol content (BAC) is close to .08% or when there are holes in the prosecution’s case that make it a challenge to obtain a DUI/OVI conviction. These plea bargains may be in your favor, but you should consult your DUI/OVI lawyer before accepting one.

What is a Wet Reckless?

A lesser charge, wet reckless is a term for a reckless driving charge that involves alcohol. Unlike some other states, Ohio does not have a specific statute that deals with reckless driving and alcohol. Instead, prosecutors use a standard statute for all types of reckless driving. You do not have to be recklessly driving to be convicted of a wet reckless charge. Being intoxicated is considered reckless driving. Wet reckless pleas are often made only for first-time offenders when their BAC is considered borderline, or slightly above or below the legal limit. The driver also must not have causes any property damage or personal injury.

DUI VS Wet Reckless Charges

A wet reckless is a reduced plea deal for drivers charged with driving under the influence of alcohol. Instead of pleading guilty to a DUI, a driver may plead to a wet reckless and evade the harsh consequences of a DUI conviction. A wet reckless plea agreement can reduce the amount of points on your license, keep you out of jail, and minimize the fines you are required to pay.

While some states do not recognize wet reckless plea arrangements, drivers facing DUI charges in Ohio are able to pursue this particular form of DUI mitigation. However, drivers pursuing a wet reckless in place of a DUI should know this is a plea deal, which means it is intended to weaken the blow but not necessarily remove the possibility of serious consequences. With that said, drivers making a wet reckless plea bargain will likely still be subject to some consequences, such as fines, points on their license, educational courses on alcohol and reckless driving, and more. A wet reckless will also be treated as a first offense for drivers who are later brought to court for DUI again, and the penalties of a DUI conviction following a wet reckless plea agreement will be the same as that of a second DUI offense.

If you have been arrested and charged for driving under the influence, penalties and fines are not all you have to worry about. You will also have criminal charges on your record, and you could be subject to significantly increased insurance rates when your charges are reported to your insurance provided. Our Dayton DUI attorneys at L. Patrick Mulligan & Associates, LLC are capable, willing, and ready to help you defend your DUI charges. It is our mission to make sure you get the best outcome possible.

Call (937) 685-7006 today to get started, or send us your information to receive a free case evaluation.

What are the Consequences of a Wet Reckless Charge?

A Wet reckless charge has the same penalties as other reckless driving charges. Prior convictions also play a part in the severity of your sentence, but reckless driving charges are far less serious than DUI/OVI penalties.

No Prior Traffic Convictions:

  • Minor misdemeanor
  • $100 fine

One Prior Traffic Conviction in the Past Year:

  • Fourth-degree misdemeanor
  • Up to $250 in fines
  • Up to 30 Days in jail

Two Prior Traffic Convictions in the Past Year:

  • Third-degree misdemeanor
  • Up to $500 in fines
  • Up to 60 Days in jail

It is also possible that your driver’s license may be suspended for any period between 6 months to 3 years. It isn’t required that the judge do so, which may allow you to keep your license. If you are charged with a DUI/OVI, it would be far more difficult to keep your license.

Get Help with your DUI/OVI Case - 937.685.7006

Facing DUI charges can be difficult, and your driving privileges may be at risk. Our Dayton DUI/OVI defense attorney can help you build the best defense and guide you through your case. If possible, we will fight to ensure that your charges are lowered to a wet reckless, and that you will avoid the hard penalties of a DUI/OVI conviction. You can trust that our team at L. Patrick Mulligan & Associates, LLC is in your corner.

Learn how we can help you with a free, confidential case evaluation. Contact our offices today by calling 937.685.7006.