Mandatory Minimum Sentences Under Minnesota’s DWI Laws

Upon conviction for DWI, repeat offenders are subject to the following mandatory minimum criminal penalties:

  • second DWI offense within ten years: 30 days incarceration, at least 48 hours of which must be served in jail/workhouse, with eight hours of community work service for each day less than 30 served
  • third DWI offense within ten years: 90 days incarceration, at least 30 days of which must be served consecutively in a local jail/workhouse
  • fourth DWI offense within ten years: 180 days of incarceration, at least 30 days of which must be served consecutively in a local jail/workhouse
  • fifth DWI offense within ten years: One year of incarceration, at least 60 days of which must be served consecutively in a local jail/workhouse

For All Repeat DWI Offenders

The court may order that the person spend the remainder (nonjail portion) of the mandatory minimum sentence under REAM or on home detention.

An Alternative to the Mandatory Minimum Period of Incarceration

The court may sentence the offender to a program of intensive probation for repeat DWI offenders that requires the person to consecutively serve at least six days in jail/workhouse and may order that the remainder of the minimum sentence be served on home detention.

Long-term DWI Monitoring Required

Long-term monitoring applies to most third-time DWI offenders and all those under age 19. When the court stays part or all of a jail sentence, it must order the offender to submit to REAM for at least 30 days each year of probation.

Felony DWI Penalties

If a person is convicted of felony DWI and given a stayed prison sentence, then that person must be sentenced in accordance with the local sentencing provisions described in this section. (For more, see the Felony DWI section.)

Intermediate Sanctions and Probation Resulting From DWI

When sentencing a DWI offender, the court may impose and execute a sentence to incarcerate, or it may stay imposition or execution of sentence and:

  • order intermediate sanctions without probation; or
  • place the person on probation with or without supervision and under terms the court prescribes, including intermediate sanctions if prescribed.

The term “intermediate sanction” includes but is not limited to jail, home detention, electronic monitoring, intensive supervision, sentencing to service, day reporting, chemical dependency and mental health treatment, restitution, fines, day fines, community work service, restorative justice work, and work in lieu of fines or restitution.

For DWI convictions, the maximum period of the stay of sentence, is:

  • two years, for a misdemeanor conviction;
  • six years, for a gross misdemeanor conviction; and
  • seven years, for a felony DWI conviction.

CREDIT: The content of this post has been copied or adopted from An Overview of Minnesota’s DWI Laws, originally published by the Minnesota House of Representatives Research Department and written by legislative analysts Jim Cleary and Rebecca Pirius.

This is also part of a series of posts on Minnesota’s DWI Laws.

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