The North Carolina DWI Laws had, until recently, five levels of sentencing for North Carolina DWI Convictions. These levels run from Level 5 (least severe) to Level 1 (most severe) and apply to North Carolina DWI offenses committed prior to December 1, 2011.
For DWI offenses committed on or after December 1, 2011, the recently passed “Laura’s Law” creates a new 6th level of sentencing called ‘Aggravated Level 1.’ In addition to the addition of a new, more severe Sentencing Level, Laura’s Law also made a change to one of the ‘Grossly Aggravating Factors’ discussed in the following pages which made it easier for people to have a Grossly Aggravating Factor against them at Sentencing. Lastly, Laura’s Law also change the way in which Grossly Aggravating Factors are considered by the courts by having the one that was recently change require a new, higher Sentencing Level then it had previously. The following pages will provide some insight into what is meant by this.