If you’ve received your 2nd DUI offense in Rhode Island, now is the time to speak with an experienced DUI attorney who can help you with your case. No two cases are the same, but there are mandatory fines and penalties for multiple DUIs that you need to understand. You may also have legal recourse to receive a reduced sentence depending on the circumstances of your arrest. A DUI attorney experienced in Rhode Island’s DUI laws can guide you through the process for the best possible outcome.
The state of Rhode Island mandates stiff punishment for a 2nd DUI offense. In fact, if the DUI occurred within five years of the first charge of driving while under the influence, there will be a mandatory jail sentence. This misdemeanor criminal charge will result in fines, court costs, and assessments. The total cost could amount to thousands of dollars. The court will almost certainly order alcohol and drug treatment along with counseling. Those charged with DUI 2nd offense will also serve a lengthy suspended jail sentence. A period of probation will likely follow jail time served.
There is a minimum jail sentence for a Rhode Island second offense DUI, the length of which is based on the blood alcohol level of the suspect at the time of the arrest. If convicted, individuals who submitted to a blood-alcohol test and had results between 0.08-0.15 BAC (blood alcohol content) will face a mandatory minimum jail sentence of 10 days. If your results are over 0.15 BAC, the minimum sentence is six months in jail.
The judge will probably suspend your license for 1-2 years.
Mandatory alcohol treatment will be imposed as part of the probation requirement following a 2nd DUI conviction. The program is monitored by both the probation officer and the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). You must choose a DMV-approved drug and alcohol treatment provider to eventually have your driving privileges reinstated when you’ve completed the program.
There are two sets of penalties for people under the age of 21 who are convicted of DUI for the second time within five years.
An individual younger than 18 convicted of DUI for the second time in 5 years with a 0.2 BAC or higher will get a fine of up to $500 and will be sentenced to a year in the Rhode Island Training School. The convicted individual will face a license suspension until the age of 21, as well.
Second-time DUI offenders between the ages of 18-21 with a BAC .02 or higher receive a $250 fine and a $300 highway assessment fee. He or she will get a suspended license for 3-6 months. The individual must attend a DUI course, as well as an alcohol treatment program.
The total court costs, fines and related fees and assessments for a second DUI offense can range between $1,000-$2,000. This amount does not include your attorney’s fees. You will pay a fine for the infraction ranging from $400-$1000, court costs. You will also have to pay a fee to the Department of Health, as well as highway assessments.
The look-back period is the amount of time between DUI convictions. In Rhode Island, the look-back period is five years from conviction to conviction. Meaning if you are charged with and convicted of a second or third DUI more than five years after your first conviction, it will count as your first DUI offense. If your first DUI offense was dismissed or reduced to a lesser charge, the second offense would be considered a first offense.
Rhode Island law does not treat a first DUI conviction lightly. A second conviction is considered a severe transgression. The state takes every measure to both penalize and rehabilitate offenders. The ultimate goal is to prevent the third offense. The costly fines associated with a DUI conviction will make life temporarily uncomfortable. A misdemeanor conviction on your record can make life difficult for years into the future when seeking employment. Likewise, getting approved for an apartment could be a struggle. Driving under the influence is a danger to yourself and the community at large. Therefore, the Rhode Island Legislature has deemed it necessary to impose strict penalties on those individuals who choose to get behind the wheel when under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Seek legal counsel to help you get the best possible outcome following your 2nd DUI offense. With 30 years of DUI and Criminal Defense expertise, S. Joshua Macktaz, Esq. will aggressively defend you in a court of law. Your successful future depends on a strong defense. Contact the law offices of Rhode Island DUI Defense Attorney S. Joshua Macktaz, Esq. today at 401-861-1155.