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Does the anticipated tough OUI law miss the mark?

In our last post, we discussed how two Wisconsin state lawmakers, Reps. Eric Genrich, D-Green Bay, and Andre Jacque, R-De Pere, are expected to introduce a new bill in coming weeks that would propose permanent license suspensions for Wisconsin drivers who are convicted of five or more OUIs.

In supporting the lawmakers’ anticipated bill, an editorial from the Wausau Daily Herald said that Wisconsin’s drunk driving laws are currently too lenient and should be toughened, but brought up another important point about drunk driving. 

The editorial stated that punishing drunk drivers who have alcohol or drug addictions doesn’t address “the root cause” of the issue. 

Instead, the editorial staff wrote, it is “through treatment, through social supports and perhaps through successful programs such as OWI court” that the problem of drunk driving can truly be addressed.

After working with many repeat OUI offenders, we can attest that even tough penalties aren’t always enough to stop drunk driving when it is a disease instead of a choice. This is why we often try to reach a plea agreement with prosecutors that allows our clients to get the treatment they need.

In many cases, individuals with repeat OUI offenses are in need of help and guidance, not just being thrown in jail to think about what they have done. It’s important for these individuals to work with a defense attorney who understands that.

Our firm doesn’t judge clients for past mistakes that they have made or crimes that they have been accused of. We fight for the rights and dignity of each and every one of our clients.

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