Experienced Lawyers for DWI Defense in East Greenwich and Warwick

Fighting DUI and drunk driving charges in Rhode Island

Driving while intoxicated (DWI) is a serious crime in Rhode Island that can affect every aspect of your life -- including your family, freedom, finances and your future employment prospects. With so much at stake, you need assertive, knowledgeable counsel to zealously defend your rights. With 30 years of experience successfully defending clients charged with DWI, reckless endangerment and traffic violations, Kerry I. Rafanelli, Attorney at Law can obtain the best possible outcome in your case.

Penalties for DWI in Rhode Island

Potential penalties for a DWI conviction include incarceration, heavy fines, community service hours, drunk driving school and license suspension. For first- and second-time convictions, you can receive up to one year in prison and mandatory jail for the second offense. A third DWI offense is a felony that carries a sentence of one to three years. Aggravators -- such as a DWI accident, leaving the scene of an accident or driving with a minor in the car -- can increase the prison term.

Blood alcohol content level

Your blood alcohol content (BAC) level presents compelling evidence as to your state from the prosecutors. Your BAC was obtained if you submitted to the Breathalyzer® test at the time you were arrested. Rhode Island statutes set a BAC of .08 or higher as the level at which a driver is presumed incapable of safely operating a motor vehicle, with .10 and .15 or higher resulting in harsher penalties. You may still be considered impaired if your results were below the legal .08 BAC limit, but that level creates a presumption that you were driving intoxicated.

If you do not take the test

If you decided not to take a Breathalyzer® test, you can still be charged with DWI based on other evidence as well as refusal to take a breath chemical test which results in significant loss of license if proven. For example, the prosecutor may present videos or police officer testimony that show the manner in which you drove before you were pulled over or your performance on field sobriety tests. However, the state must rely on this other evidence to meet its burden of proof.

Learn more about DWI defense from DUI attorneys serving North Kingstown, Cranston and Coventry

Consult an experienced East Greenwich attorney to defend you if you have been charged with DWI. Call Kerry I. Rafanelli, Attorney at Law or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.