What constitutes a DUI In Rhode Island? 

There are many different ways that someone can be charged with a DUI in Rhode Island. The most common way is for a police officer to observe someone driving erratically and then pull them over. Once the driver has been pulled over, the officer will usually ask them to perform a series of field sobriety tests. If the officer believes that the driver is intoxicated, they will then arrest them and bring them to the station for a breathalyzer test. If the breathalyzer test registers a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08% or higher, the driver will be charged with DUI. 

However, it is important to note that a person can still be charged with DUI even if their BAC is below .08%. If the officer believes that the person is impaired to the point where they are a danger to themselves or others, they can still be charged. Additionally, if a person refuses to take a breathalyzer test, they can also be charged with DUI. 

What are the penalties for a First Offense DUI in Rhode Island? 

A first-offense DUI in Rhode Island can have some pretty gnarly penalties, including a mandatory license suspension, community service hours, high fines, and the potential for jail time up to one year. The duration of the license suspension from a first offense DUI conviction ranges from three to twelve months while the maximum amount of community service that could be required is sixty hours. Lastly, rack up those dollars because the fines and fees associated with a first offense  DUI could cost you thousands. 

Will I lose my driver’s license for a First Offense DUI? 

The most pressing problem that many persons charged with a first DUI face is the potential of losing their driver’s license. For a first offense DUI conviction, the Rhode Island DUI law demands that the court sentence offenders to at least three months of driver’s license suspension. However, an experienced Rhode Island DUI Attorney may lawfully maneuver to reduce or eliminate any loss of your driver’s license in certain situations. 

While the basic minimum loss of license is three months, many judges will impose penalties far exceeding the required amount if they feel that aggravating factors justify a lengthier suspension. (1) An accident during the arrest (2) Excessive speed or aggressive driving, and (3) when interacting with arresting officials, being unpleasant or discourteous. 

Will I go to jail if I am convicted of a First Offense DUI? 

A common question I hear from clients is whether they will go to jail for a first offense DUI, and my answer is usually no. Sentences of up to one year in jail are possible under Rhode Island law, but this is generally not what happens when there’s been no serious injury involved. That said, every case has its exceptions, so it’s crucial to have good representation regardless of the charge. 

If you’ve been charged with a DUI, you should contact an experienced DUI defense attorney as soon as possible. An attorney will be able to examine the facts of your case and advise you on the best course of action. They will also defend you in court and ensure that your legal rights are protected. 

What is “First Offense DUI BAC Unknown”? 

When the Police charge an individual with “first offense DUI BAC unknown,” it’s usually because they refused to take a chemical test at the station and the Officers believe this person drove under the influence of drugs or alcohol. 

Are you looking for a defense attorney in Rhode Island? 

We spend the time to ensure that you fully comprehend all of your legal concerns, risks, and ramifications. This begins with your free consultation. Having served as a prosecutor, Stefanie Murphy knows how law enforcement builds cases and prosecutes them. This allows her to anticipate the prosecution’s moves and develop strategies for ensuring the best possible outcome for her clients.