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Bucher Law Group, LLC

What Are the Penalties For Homicide While Driving Drunk in Wisconsin?

Posted on in Drunk Driving

Waukesha County OWI homicide defense attorney

When it comes to drunk driving laws, Wisconsin is relatively lenient compared to other states. In fact, Wisconsin is the only state in the country in which a first-time DUI offense is merely a ticket, rather than a criminal charge. Even when a person reaches his or her second, third, or even fourth conviction of Operating While Intoxicated (OWI), the sentence typically does not involve jail time. Rather, probation is usually given to those offenders, even if their driving privileges were revoked. Jail time can be expected, however, if there are certain aggravating factors present in the situation to warrant a need for incarceration. Aggravating factors in a Wisconsin OWI case can include causing bodily harm or injury to another person, committing OWI with a child in the vehicle, or one of the most serious charges: homicide while committing OWI.

Charges for Homicide While Driving Under the Influence

In all 50 states, operating a vehicle while you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol is illegal. Adding an aggravating factor to OWI, such as killing another person, makes the charges even more serious. In Wisconsin, a person commits the offense of homicide by intoxicated use of vehicle when he or she causes the death of another person due to the handling of the vehicle while he or she was under the influence of alcohol or any type of drug, had a BAC of 0.08 or more, or if he or she had a BAC of 0.04 or more and was driving a commercial motor vehicle (CMV). 

Consequences for OWI Homicide

In some cases, a charge of committing homicide while under the influence will be classified as a Class D felony. This means an offender can face up to 25 years in prison, up to $100,000 in fines, and a five-year driver’s license revocation. Many people who are charged with homicide while driving drunk have been previously charged with OWI in some way. In these cases, the charges will be increased to Class C felony charges. This means an offender may face up to 40 years in prison and a five-year driver’s license revocation. In either case, recent laws passed in Wisconsin state that there is a minimum five-year prison sentence for anyone who kills another person while driving drunk.

Contact an Ozaukee County Criminal Defense Attorney 

Even though OWI laws are not as strict in Wisconsin as they are in other states, you can still expect to receive rather severe punishments if you unintentionally kill someone because you were driving while you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If you have been charged with OWI homicide, speak with a Milwaukee County OWI defense lawyer right away. At the Bucher Law Group, LLC, we know how serious this type of criminal charge is and how it can follow you for the rest of your life. We will build an aggressive defense to reduce or dismiss your charges altogether. Call our office today at 262-303-4916 to schedule a free consultation.

 

Sources:

https://wisconsindot.gov/Documents/safety/education/drunk-drv/owi-penchrt.pdf

https://docs.legis.wisconsin.gov/statutes/statutes/940/I/09

 

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