Does everyone receive the same basic treatment when it comes to arrest, booking, arraignment, and sentencing for an operating under the influence of drugs/alcohol charge in Maine?
Yes, to a certain degree. While the courts do work hard to ensure that each offender is treated the same, there will always seem to be those who receive deferential treatment for whatever reason. For the most part, though, each defendant is treated pretty much the same throughout the trial process.
The only major difference involves those who are first-time offenders versus repeat or subsequent offenders. The more offenses of any kind that you have on your criminal record, the more severely your crime may be punished. This does not only apply to the state of Maine or Maine offenses, but most states and offenses throughout the nation, depending on the person and type of offense, date, and much more.
Will I have to stand before a judge if I'm arrested for OUI, or can I pay a fine and be released?
An OUI charge is very serious and it is unlikely that the DA will be looking to cut you a break at arraignment. If your attorney is able to negotiate your freedom, you may be able to be released on bond, bail, or own recognizance, depending on a variety of factors. In some cases, your attorney may be able to achieve having all charges being dropped, also depending on many unique factors, including evidence.
Can I keep my driver's license if I'm convicted of OUI?
In most cases, you are not likely to be granted driving privileges until the minimum loss of privilege time has expired or you have served 2/3rds of your suspension and fulfilled all other reinstatement requirements, including completion of the DEEP course.
The length of time that you are without driving rights varies, but there are state minimums that apply, depending on how many OUI offenses you have in the last ten years. Those offenses in other states (such as having a DUI in New Hampshire before moving to Maine two years ago) could count when the judge looks at your case to determine whether it is considered your first OUI offense.