In previous blog posts, we've discussed some of the consequences that Rhode Island drivers face if convicted of drunk driving charges. These penalties include costly fines, driver's license suspension or revocation, jail time, probation, community service and mandatory alcohol abuse education classes. While these penalties are significant, there are often additional consequences that result from a DUI conviction that may initially be less obvious.
We frequently discuss how a drunk driving arrest and subsequent conviction can negatively impact an individual's life, and those of his or her spouse and children, in numerous ways. A DUI conviction in Rhode Island can result in an individual paying thousands of dollars in fines, losing his or her driver's license for months and even spending time behind bars.
As is the case in other states, the law in Rhode Island presumes that, if you have a driver's license, then you have already given consent to breath, blood or urine tests for the purpose of determining whether or not you are driving under the influence. Refusing a chemical test can therefore result in penalties also handed down for DUI convictions.
Having a driver's license suspended can create a lot of problems for a person. Numerous Rhode Island residents depend on the ability to drive in order to provide for themselves and/or their families. The inability to do that can take a drastic toll on a person's financial state and his or her relationships. If a suspension is ordered for a DUI-related offense, a driver's license suspension or revocation can last for months to years.
Many Rhode Island residents may not have heard this incredible story, but a 55-year-old man in Canada was recently driving home one morning after he had been drinking the night before. The man knew he was drunk, and so he pulled over on a freeway and called the police -- on himself. The police showed up and gave the man a breath test which showed that he was indeed over the legal limit.
Many Rhode Island residents are struggling to enjoy the Patriots' return to the Super Bowl this season due to the "Deflategate" scandal that has rocked the team. The Patriots beat the Colts in the AFC Championship game, giving the Patriots a berth in the Super Bowl. However, it was discovered that the Patriots beat the Colts with footballs that were under-inflated -- and provided by the team.
The New Year has only been around for 13 days, and there are probably some people out there who have already given up on their New Year's resolutions (there are probably many more keeping up with them, too). But there's one entity that hasn't given up on a new resolution, and that's the state of Rhode Island. On Jan. 1, the state put into effect a law that allows judges to ban DUI offenders from operating a vehicle without ignition interlock.
Anyone can make a mistake. Teachers, law enforcement, students and celebrity athletes alike, all can end up facing serious consequences due to clouded judgment. However, just because someone makes a mistake, it does not mean his or her life is over.
We've talked about the immense consequences of a drunk driving charge before on this blog, and why consulting with and eventually hiring a criminal defense attorney after a DUI charge is absolutely vital. The breadth, depth and variety of punishment that is available for people accused of and/or convicted of a drunk driving charge can leave a person with few options to rebuild their life in the weeks, months and years that follow the charge.