DUI Defense, Navigating Rhode Island Drunk Driving Laws

November 21, 2023 – Thomas G. Briody

Law enforcement in Rhode Island actively pursues cases involving drunk and impaired drivers. Both the Rhode Island State Police and local departments rigorously arrest drivers upon probable cause of operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Arrests and convictions can stem from an officer’s observations or chemical/breath test results. A blood, urine, or breath test indicating an alcohol level of 0.08 or higher is adequate for a driving under the influence (DUI) conviction. Exceeding this limit can escalate penalties.

Rhode Island drivers implicitly consent to chemical testing if officers have reasonable grounds to request it. Refusal may result in a preliminary license suspension, fines, and potentially a year-long permanent license suspension.
Penalties for DUI convictions encompass fines, mandatory community service, attendance at substance influence courses, driver’s license suspension, and potential jail time. In specific situations, a defendant might apply for a hardship license, allowing limited driving privileges.

Additionally, courts may mandate the installation of an interlock device in the vehicle, preventing its ignition if alcohol is detected on the driver’s breath.

Repeat DUI offenses or refusal of chemical tests incur harsher penalties in Rhode Island courts. If an intoxicated driver causes injury in an accident, a jail sentence becomes highly probable.

Given the complexity and evolving nature of Rhode Island’s drunk driving laws, seeking legal counsel is imperative. Handling DUI cases alone is not advisable. Retaining an attorney specializing in DUI cases is crucial for building a robust defense or minimizing potential penalties.

Don’t navigate DUI charges without professional assistance. Secure your rights and seek expert guidance for a solid DUI defense.

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