As reported by Maria Armental in the January 15, 2013 edition of the Providence Journal, a Rhode Island attorney has been arrested for drunk driving and refusal to submit to a chemical test again. This same attorney was previously arrested for drunk driving and refusal to submit to a chemical test last year. The DUI charge was dismissed but she was convicted of Refusal and received a $200.00 fine, forty (40) hours of community service and nine (9) months loss of license. The Refusal conviction is currently on appeal and the imposition of the sentence was stayed pending the appeal.
The new charges stem from a car accident in East Providence. The woman hit a parked car. In addition to the DUI charge and second offense Refusal charge, she has also been charged with leaving the scene of an accident and traffic violations.
Pursuant to Rhode Island General Laws 31-27-2.1, refusal to submit to a chemical test is defined as any person who operates a motor vehicle within this state shall be deemed to have given his or her consent to chemical tests of his or her breath, blood, and/or urine for the purpose of determining the chemical content of his or her body fluids or breath. No more than two (2) complete tests, one for the presence of intoxicating liquor and one for the presence of toluene or any controlled substance, as defined in § 21-28-1.02(7), shall be administered at the direction of a law enforcement officer having reasonable grounds to believe the person to have been driving a motor vehicle within this state while under the influence of intoxicating liquor, toluene, or any controlled substance, as defined in chapter 28 of title 21, or any combination of these. The director of the department of health is empowered to make and file with the secretary of state, regulations which prescribe the techniques and methods of chemical analysis of the person's body fluids or breath and the qualifications and certification of individuals authorized to administer the testing and analysis.
The penalties for a first offense include a fine in the amount of two hundred dollars ($200) to five hundred dollars ($500) and shall order the person to perform ten (10) to sixty (60) hours of public community restitution. The person's driving license in this state shall be suspended for a period of six (6) months to one year. The traffic tribunal judge shall require attendance at a special course on driving while intoxicated or under the influence of a controlled substance and/or alcohol or drug treatment for the individual. A first offense Refusal charge is a civil violation and does not result in a criminal record.
However, a second offense Refusal charge is a criminal misdemeanor and if convicted will result in a criminal record. The penalties if convicted include imprisonment for not more than six (6) months and shall pay a fine in the amount of six hundred dollars ($600) to one thousand dollars ($1,000), order the person to perform sixty (60) to one hundred (100) hours of public community restitution, and the person's driving license in this state shall be suspended for a period of one year to two (2) years. The judge shall require alcohol and/or drug treatment for the individual.
If you or a family member has been charged with refusal to submit to a chemical test – first offense, refusal to submit to a chemical test - second offense or drunk driving, please allow Attorney Robert H. Humphrey's reputation, experience and skill to successfully guide you through the legal process. Please contact Attorney Robert H. Humphrey, Esq., at 401-816-5862 or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.