Felony DUI and Great Bodily Injury
A felony conviction for DUI per California Vehicle Code section 23153(a) or 23153(b), constitutes a strike if the defendant "personally inflicts great bodily injury on any person" per Penal Code Section 1192.7(c)(8). To amount to great bodily injury within the meaning of the penal code, there must be significant or substantial physical injury to another (People v Guzman (2000) 77 Cal.App. 4th 761). The question of what constitutes significant or substantial injury is a factual one for a jury to determine.
A defendant sentenced to state prison for felony DUI with a great bodily injury enhancement must serve 85 percent of the sentence as the conviction amounts to a violent felony pursuant to penal code sections 2933.1 and 667.5. A conviction for felony DUI without the enhancement entitles the defendant to early release after serving 50% of any prison sentence. Notwithstanding an allegation of felony DUI with a GBI enhancenent, if probation is granted and the defendant serves county jail time instead of state prison time, normal credit will be given against any county jail time.
If you have been charged with felony DUI in Los Angeles, please contact experienced felony DUI defense attorneys Gold and Witham for an immediate case evaluation.