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Wisconsin Operating While Intoxicated (OWI) Laws 

In the state of Wisconsin, it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle if you are under the influence of alcohol or any detectable amount of controlled substance. Unless there was a minor passenger in the vehicle under 16 years of age at the time of the violation, the first offense OWI in Wisconsin is considered a "civil forfeiture offense."  It is not a criminal violation.  However, if convicted, you will lose your license, pay a steep forfeiture, and have to take an Alcohol or Other Assessment (AODA).  There are also instances where you may have to install an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) in your vehicle for a period time if your Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) is greater than .15%. Thus, even a first offense OWI charge is not something to be taken lightly. 

According to Wisconsin OWI laws, a person having a BAC of .08% or higher is deemed to be too impaired to operate a motor vehicle. The limits are even lower for someone facing a fourth offense or greater OWI charge.  Any driver in Milwaukee or throughout the state of Wisconsin with a BAC at or above the legal limit could be arrested and charged with OWI. These limits are established by statutory laws and are strongly prosecuted in all Wisconsin counties.  It is very rare for these types of charges to be amended by a prosecutor.  If charged with an OWI offense, you do have certain defenses.  These defenses must be explored with you by an experienced OWI attorney. 

It is considered a criminal violation for a first offense OWI conviction in Wisconsin with a minor passenger under 16 years of age in the vehicle.  Also, all second and subsequent OWI offenses in Wisconsin are criminal in nature.  This means that in any criminal OWI prosecution there is a mandatory minimum jail sentence that must be served upon conviction.  There are other mandatory minimum penalties (fines, license revocation, IID etc.) also associated with the conviction depending on the number and circumstances. 

Aggressive Milwaukee OWI Defense Attorney

Despite what people may believe, many OWI cases can be won, even if the government's evidence seems strong.  Attorney Christopher J. Cherella takes a comprehensive approach to every case, challenging the prosecutor to prove every element of the case.  Any one of these or other factors could lead to the dismissal of your OWI charge or reduction to a lesser, non-OWI traffic offense:

  • Did the police have reasonable suspicion to stop you?
  • Did the polic have reasonable suspicion to believe that you were intoxicated?
  • Did the police have probable cause to arrest you?
  • Is the police report and subsequent officer testimony consistent with video and other evidence?
  • Were you properly advised of your rights before submitting to a breath or blood test?
  • Were you observed continuously for 20 minutes prior to submitting to the breath or blood test?
  • Did you voluntarily submit to the breath or blood test?
  • Did the breathalyzer machine return accurate blood alcohol results?
  • Can the blood or breathalyzer results be suppressed?
  • Was there an unlawful forced blood draw?
  • Are there physical or biological factors that could have produced abnormally high blood alcohol results? 

At the Law Offices of Christopher J. Cherella, I understand the importance of your driver’s license.  I also understand how the freedom to drive affects in your everyday life. When you retain me to represent you, I give you my word that I will defend you with skill, passion and conviction.  I will always seek to overcome the harm that can come to you from an OWI conviction. 

Milwaukee and Wisconsin OWI Defense Attorney

At the Law Offices of Christopher J. Cherella, I am fully prepared to successfully defend your OWI prosecution, and I can provide you with the direction and legal counsel you need to fight your case.  If you require the services of an experienced, dependable, and knowledgeable Milwaukee or OWI Defense Lawyer with a thorough understanding of all areas of impaired driving, please contact the Law Offices of Christopher J. Cherella for a free consultation.   You may call during business hours at 414-347-9334 or after hours on my cell phone at 414-339-1899 or contact me online.

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