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Rhode Island repeat DUI offender penalties

If you are facing a drunk driving charge, you may be worried about how it might affect your reputation, your career and your personal relationships in addition to any fines and criminal penalties you may face. The repercussions associated with a drunk driving conviction tend to vary based on factors such whether you are over the age of 21 and how high your blood-alcohol content is, and they, too, vary based on whether it is your first or a subsequent offense.

If you are over 21 and a first-time DUI offender in Rhode Island, you may be fined several hundred dollars and have your license revoked for up to six months. You may face additional penalties at the discretion of the court. You may also, if convicted, have to log a certain number of hours in community service, alcohol treatment or a driving instructional facility, or you might have to serve up to a year behind bars.

Second-time DUI offender penalties

As is the case with first-time offenses, the penalties associated with second-time DUI offenses (within the same five-year period) in Rhode Island tend to vary based on your blood-alcohol content and how much it exceeds the legal limit of 0.08 percent. If you are convicted for a second time and your blood-alcohol level is no higher than 0.15 percent, you may lose your license for up to two years and spend as much as a year in jail. You may, too, have to install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle or complete alcohol or drug treatment for a given amount of time. If your breath test reveals your blood-alcohol content is higher than 0.15 percent, you can expect even harsher repercussions. You may lose your license for several years, or you might have to spend between six months and a year in jail in addition to any steep fines you may receive.

Third-time DUI offender penalties

If you are convicted of drunk driving for a third time within a five-year period and your breath test results reveal a blood-alcohol content between 0.08 percent and 0.15 percent, you are facing a felony charge with a mandatory fine. You can expect to receive between one and three years in jail, and you should also be prepared to go without a license for several years. You may, too, have to complete drug or alcohol treatment and keep an ignition interlock device installed in your vehicle for two years following your jail sentence.

For more about Rhode Island's punishments for DUI offenders or to build your own defense, consider getting in contact with an attorney.

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