Here in Wisconsin, unlike other criminal charges, drunk driving charges cannot be removed from a person’s criminal record. No matter how long ago the charge took place, or where the driver lived at the time, previous DWI, DUI and OWI charges are always visible on a person’s record.
Being arrested for a second offense drunk driving charge, or subsequent offense, can result in very serious penalties. For example, the second offense is only a misdemeanor but a conviction results in automatic jail time. A fourth or fifth DUI conviction is a felony, and can result in significant time in jail or prison. This weekend, a Milwaukee man was arrested on suspicion of his fifth intoxicated driving offense.
An officer reportedly saw the 32-year-old man driving somewhat erratically on Interstate 94 westbound by Hawley Road just before 1 a.m. Friday. According the arresting officer, the man swerved across several lanes and almost struck a semi-truck. Interestingly, the police officer did not pull over the vehicle after witnessing such driving.
Instead, the officer confronted the man after he parked at a hospital and ran inside.
Due to what happened before the arrest, one wonders whether some sort of medical emergency was a factor that influenced the strange driving.
Because this is his fifth OWI charge, the man could face six years of imprisonment if convicted, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
A fifth drunk driving conviction can also include a fine of anywhere between $600 and $10,000, a two- to three-year license revocation and installation of an ignition interlock device. Probation is also sometimes available.
Clearly, repeat drunk driving charges are serious, and they result in serious penalties, making it imperative to put forth a solid criminal defense in order to arrive at the best possible results.
Source: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, “Milwaukee man arrested on 5th OWI,” Mike Johnson, June 29, 2012