An OVI charge, operating a vehicle while under the influence, is serious and can lead to jail time, fines, and affect your driving privileges. 

First-time offenders face mandatory jail time and a DIP (Drivers intervention program) along with fines, court costs,  and limited or restricted driving privileges. If you or someone close to you has been charged with an OVI, you should reach out to an attorney immediately. 


At The Law Offices of Warner Mendenhall, we seek out all the evidence to find ways to reduce or eliminate the charges. Many stops have no basis and can be challenged with a Motion to Suppress the evidence. Often, our aggressive stance can help reduce the charge to reckless operation or physical control instead of OVI. 

Reckless Operation 

This is a minor misdemeanor for a first offense, an M4 if it is your second traffic offense within one year, and an M3 if third. This charge also comes with a 4-point violation towards your license, but it does not include a mandatory license suspension. If your license is suspended, you must pay $40.00 to get it reinstated. 

Physical Control

This offense is a first-degree misdemeanor. There are no enhanced penalties for multiple physical control charges, and it does not count as a prior OVI for increased penalties purposes. It is also a 0-point violation, so it will not affect your driving privileges. Like reckless operation, this charge does not carry a mandatory license suspension. However, if yours is suspended, it will cost $475.00 to reinstate. Finally, this is an alcohol-related offense, and the court may require you to attend a drivers intervention program.  

For more information regarding OVI’s, reckless operation, and physical control charges, please click here.