A new law regarding drunk driving will go into effect on New Year’s Day, as repeat drunken drivers will now face more severe penalties.
Back in April, Governor Scott Walker signed a new law that makes a fourth drunk driving offense carry felony charges, despite when it occurs. Prior to the law, a fourth offense was considered a felony only if it was committed within five years of the third offense.
Another stipulation of the law increases the maximum sentence for fifth and sixth offenses from three years to five. Drivers facing their seventh, eighth, or ninth offenses will see an increase of maximum sentencing from five years to seven and a half. A tenth offense will carry a maximum sentence bump from seven and a half years to ten.
As of now, Wisconsin remains the only state that doesn’t criminalize a first offense.