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Wisconsin man charged with drunk driving for sleeping in his car

We have previously written that Wisconsin residents sometimes get charged and convicted of DUI even though they were never seen driving their car. Wisconsin police officers sometimes assume the worst when they encounter an intoxicated person in a vehicle.

Earlier this month, a repeat DUI offender was charged with his 14th drunk driving offense. However, he must have been easy to catch because he was sleeping in his car, safely parked in a lot.

Last weekend, a police officer arrested a 64-year-old man in Weston when he found him asleep in the driver's seat of his van at 3 a.m. The keys were in the ignition but there were no reports that the car was running.

According to authorities, the man had a BAC of 0.15 percent, which is nearly twice the legal limit. However, because of his previous DUI convictions, he was held to a standard of just 0.02 percent.

But the man had not been driving. In fact, he told the officer that he specifically chose to stop and sleep it off for the night because he thought it was the right thing to do. He added that if he knew he was going to be arrested for sleeping in his car, he would have driven back to his home in Green Bay.

This may be the great irony of his arrest. Because he chose to not to drink and drive, the man was arrested and charged with drunk driving.

According to court records, the man has 13 previous DUI convictions in 3 states. If convicted on this charge, he could face up to 12 years and 6 months in prison.

Source: Wausau Daily Herald, "Nap nets Green Bay man his 14th OWI," Jeff Starck, Oct. 4, 2011

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