As reported in the May 5, 2013 edition of the Providence Journal, the Johnston Police Department has arrested a man for drunk driving and refusal to submit to a chemical test. The arrest can after an accident involving the man and two other vehicles. The other drivers received only minor injuries.
Pursuant to Rhode Island General Laws 31-27-2, drunk driving is defined as whoever drives or otherwise operates any vehicle in the state while under the influence of any intoxicating liquor, drugs, toluene, or any controlled substance as defined in chapter 28 of title 21, or any combination of these, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor except as provided in subdivision (d)(3) and shall be punished as provided in subsection (d) of this section.
The penalties if convicted include a fine, community service, a period of license suspension, participation in DUI School or alcohol counseling and assessments. The level of penalties increases based on the chemical test results. A first offense DUI charge is a misdemeanor.
Although the other drivers suffered minor injuries, if their injuries had been more serious, the man could have been charged with drunk driving – serious injury pursuant to R.I.G.L. 31-27-2.6, defined as when serious bodily injury of any person other than the operator is caused by the operation of any motor vehicle, the operator of which is under the influence of any intoxicating liquor, toluene, or any controlled substance as defined in chapter 28 of title 21 or any combination of these, the person so operating the vehicle shall be guilty of driving under the influence of liquor or drugs, resulting in serious bodily injury.
(b) As used in this section, "serious bodily injury" means physical injury that creates a substantial risk of death or causes serious physical disfigurement or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ.
The penalties if convicted include imprisonment for not less than one year and for not more than ten (10) years and by a fine of not less than one thousand dollars ($1,000) nor more than five thousand dollars ($5,000). The sentencing judge shall have the discretion to sentence the person to any unit of the adult correctional institutions. The license of the person may be revoked for a period of up to two (2) years. The license privilege shall not be reinstated until evidence satisfactory to the administrator of the division of motor vehicles establishes that no grounds exist which would authorize refusal to issue a license and until the person gives proof of financial responsibility pursuant to chapter 32 of this title. In addition, the person convicted may be required to successfully complete alcohol or drug treatment, at their own expense, in a program established by the director of the department of corrections.
If you or a family member has been charged with drunk driving – serious injury, drunk driving, or refusal to submit to a chemical test, 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.