Wyoming’s DUI laws at a glance.
Every state has made it illegal to drive while impaired by drugs or alcohol. However, many of the related laws differ. Look below for a quick guide to some of Wyoming’s DUI laws.
There are three ways you can be convicted of a DUI. The first is probably the most well-known: when, following a DUI arrest, an officer finds that your blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) is .08% or higher. Typically, a person’s BAC is measured using a breath test, but it could also be measured with a blood or urine sample.
You could also be convicted if you’re arrested on suspicion of a DUI and, within two hours of driving, a BAC test shows .08% or higher.
The last way doesn’t necessarily involve testing your BAC. If you’re mentally or physically unsafe to drive because of alcohol and/or drug impairment, you can get a DUI. Even if your BAC is below .08%, if it’s clear that you’re too impaired to drive safely, you could be convicted.
See W.S. 31-5-233 (b)(i), W.S. 31-5-233 (b)(ii), and W.S. 31-5-233(b)(iii).
Search Warrant Upon Refusal
Before 2011, you could refuse to have your BAC tested, and the only consequence was a suspended driver’s license. Now, if you choose not to cooperate following a DUI arrest, a law enforcement officer can request a search warrant, allowing for a physical test of your BAC.
See W.S. 31-6-102(d).
Field Sobriety Tests
If an officer stops a driver and thinks they may be impaired, they’ll oftentimes conduct a series of field sobriety tests. These tests help officers determine how impaired the driver is, both physically and mentally. You may have seen some examples before, such as following a pen with your eyes; walking a straight line, heel to toe; or standing on one foot with the other slightly elevated.
Your first DUI conviction has maximum penalties of six months in jail and a $750 fine. If you have more DUIs within 10 years, the penalties quickly increase, including mandatory jail time. For example, a fourth DUI in 10 years is a felony, which comes with up to seven years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine.
See W.S. 31-5-233(e).
Ignition Interlock Device
If you’re convicted of a DUI with a BAC of .15% or higher, an ignition interlock device will be required to be installed in your vehicle for six months. This device is similar to a breathalyzer and doesn’t let the vehicle start until you blow a BAC of 0%. After the engine starts, you’ll need to blow into the device occasionally to ensure your BAC is still 0%.
Like with the general penalties, the length of time the device needs to be installed increases with every DUI. After a fourth, it could be installed for life.
See W.S. 31-5-233(f)(ii), W.S. 31-5-233(f)(iii), W.S. 31-5-233(f)(iv), and W.S. 31-5-233(f)(v).
Driver’s License Suspension
Another consequence of a DUI is a suspension of your driver’s license. It starts at 90 days after the first DUI and increases to a year if you have a second within 10 years. If the second DUI is within two years of the first, your vehicle registration will also be suspended until you get your license back.
See W.S. 31-7-128(b)(i), W.S. 31-7-128(b)(ii), and W.S. 31-7-128(c).
Youthful Offender DUI
It’s illegal for anyone under 21 to drive with a BAC of .02% or higher. The first offense comes with a fine of up to $750, the second (if it’s within two years) comes with up to 30 days in jail and the third (if it’s within two years) comes with up to six months in jail.
See W.S. 31-5-234(b) and W.S. 31-5-234(e).
DUI with Child Passengers in the Vehicle
Driving impaired with someone 16 or younger comes with extra penalties, including up to a year in jail after the first offense and up to five years after the second. These extra penalties only apply if the driver is 18 or older.
See W.S. 31-5-233(m), W.S. 31-5-233(m)(i), and W.S. 31-5-233(m)(ii).
Serious Bodily Injury
It probably comes as no surprise that if you seriously hurt someone because of a DUI, there’ll be extra consequences coming your way. Specifically, a minimum fine of $2,000 and up to 10 years in prison. That increases to up to 20 years if it happens a second time.
A “serious bodily injury” means an injury that:
- Creates a substantial risk of death
- Causes severe protracted physical pain
- Causes severe disfigurement or protracted loss or impairment of a bodily function
- Causes unconsciousness or a concussion resulting in protracted loss or impairment of the function of a bodily member, organ or mental faculty
- Causes burns of the second or third degree over a significant portion of the body
- Or causes a significant fracture or break of a bone
See W.S. 31-5-233(h), W.S. 31-5-233(h)(i), W.S. 31-5-233(h)(ii), and W.S. 6-1-104(a)(x).