In 1991, an 8 year old boy died 4 days after Christmas in his father’s arms after a drunk driver ran a red light and broadsided their car. It was the event that started a massive grass-roots campaign to change the Wisconsin drunk driving laws. The result was a significant change in 1999 that made a person’s 5 drunk driving conviction a felony charge.
While this is all well and good, more than half of all felony drunk driving convicts manage to avoid jail time. Nearly two-thirds of those who actually spent time in the state’s custody spent a year or less in jail. On top of which, those with high blood alcohol content at the time of their arrest didn’t necessarily serve time. Of all of those convicted of a fifth offense, nearly a quarter had already been convicted of felony drunk driving at least once before.
While the penalties were increased by the legislature, the sentences given out to fifth-time offenders vary drastically based on the judget handing down the sentence. In addition, the BAC of the defendant was considered by judges to be an aggravating factor by the judges. Rather than treating all drunk drivers equally, those who had a higher BAC were punished more than those with lower BACs.
If you have been injured in a car accident caused by a drunk driver, contact the Lake Geneva drunk driving accident lawyers of Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ® at 1-800-275-1729 to discuss your legal options.