Can I Plead to "Wet Reckless" in Arizona?

Plea bargaining a reduced charge in Arizona drunk driving cases.

In some states, it’s possible for a motorist who’s accused of driving under the influence (DUI) to “plea bargain” for a lesser charge. When such a plea bargain is for a reckless driving charge, it’s sometimes called a “wet reckless.”

Plea bargaining for a wet reckless is a possibility in Arizona, but only if there’s “an insufficient legal or factual basis” for the DUI charge. In other words, the law permits plea deals in DUI cases only when the evidence of guilt is weak or there’s some legal reason that could prevent a conviction. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 28-1387(I) (2017).)

The benefit of pleading to a wet reckless is simple: The penalties for a reckless driving conviction are less severe than those for driving under the influence. With reckless driving, license suspension and jail time are possible. But if you get convicted of a DUI, both are mandatory.

If you’ve been arrest for driving under the influence, talk to an experienced local DUI attorney. The facts of every case are different. A qualified DUI lawyer can talk to you about what the possibilities are for your case. 

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