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Benefit from the Experience of Attorneys Bill and Valerie Sherman Former Assistant Attorney General, Assistant County Attorneys and Magistrate Judge

Can a DUI be a Federal crime?

Q: Can DUI ever be a Federal crime or is it always a state crime?
A: That's an interesting question. Most of the time DUI is a crime charged under Georgia state law. And various courts have jurisdiction in Georgia - a superior court, a state court, a probate court or a municipal court.
However, driving under the influence (DUI) is considered a federal crime if it occurred on federal land. Federal land could be a military base or a any other property owned by the Federal Government, such as national parks. When a person is arrested for suspicion of DUI on such land, it is considered a Federal DUI. And that defendant would be prosecuted in a Federal District Court. There are different laws that are applicable to different types of properties owned by the Federal Government. The potential punishment for a federal drunk-driving conviction depends on which laws are applicable to a specific DUI case.
Federal DUI offenses occurring in national parks are governed by the Code of Federal Regulation (CFR).
Under the Code of Federal Regulations, an arrest for drunk driving (DUI) in a national park is a Class B misdemeanor. Therefore, a person charged with a DUI in a national park can be punished up to six months in a federal prison, a fine of up to $5,000 and a maximum of five years of probation.