Wisconsin Lawmakers Looking to Stiffen Drunk Driving Penalties

August 1, 2013

Drinking and driving is a major problem in Wisconsin, with an estimated 44,000 motorists convicted on charges of operating while intoxicated (OWI) last year alone. These individuals were responsible for causing car accidents in Wisconsin that claimed 238 lives and left another 4,000 motorists injured.

The number of repeat OWI offenders in the state is on the rise. In 2009, a total of 1,129 people were arrested for their fourth OWI offense. Last year, 1,153 people were facing their fourth OWI charge.

State lawmakers have been working for years to find ways to reduce the number of repeat drunk drivers. There was an effort to create stricter drunk driving law three years ago when it was decided to make a fourth OWI offense a felony. Now, according to an article from WBAY News, legislators are once again considering stiffening the penalties against drunk drivers by making a third offense a felony.

Most law enforcement officials support the stricter measures, citing statistics from this year showing there have been 17 people arrested on their third OWI charge in Green Bay, while two others received their fourth charge.

The Wisconsin personal injury attorneys with Sigman, Janssen, Sewall, Pitz & Burkham applaud the efforts being made to reduce the number of drunk drivers in Wisconsin.