Wisconsin's DUI laws prescribe progressively greater punishments for offenders depending on the number of prior convictions a person has. With each offense, jail time rises, fines increase and the license consequences become more severe. When someone has accumulated enough prior convictions to be charged with felony DUI, a person can be required to serve significant time in prison, among other consequences.
Earlier this month, law enforcement officers took a Wisconsin man into custody and charged him with drunk driving. Police said that the suspect's blood alcohol concentration was in excess of six times the legal limit. Since the man already has four prior DUI convictions on his record, this charge could result in heavy consequences if he is convicted.
It is not entirely clear what alerted law enforcement that the man may have been intoxicated. At the present time, the story does not indicate that the police observed him swerving in traffic, speeding, disobeying traffic devices or engaging in other conduct that would give them grounds to initiate a traffic stop. The story only indicates that an officer pulled the man over because the officer recognized the man. It is unclear if the man had had his license suspended.
A lot is at stake in a drunk driving case. In addition to the criminal sanctions, a conviction's effects can be felt in other areas, such as one's auto insurance. There are many things police have to do correctly during a DUI arrest, and a small misstep could provide the grounds for a defense.
Source: WTAQ.com, "Man arrested for driving drunk with a BAC six times legal limit," Aug. 20, 2012
• It is important that those charged with a DUI know and defend their rights. If you would like more information on our firm, please visit our Wisconsin DUI defense page.