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A woman from Muskego who has been convicted of drunk driving five times was recently sentenced to serve a two-year prison term as a result of her fifth drunk driving conviction. The woman was also sentenced to extended supervision for an additional three years.

The incident that led to the woman's most recent OWI conviction happened last Christmas Eve. According to the woman's admission, she drank a "ton" of alcohol that evening because she felt like she wanted to die.

While the woman was in an inebriated state, however, her son came home from his work and called 911. After the son made the call, the woman backed out of the driveway in her vehicle and continued into a culvert on the other side of the street. She was able to free the vehicle and drove away. She soon lost control of the car and struck a tree.

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There are too many reasons to name that could result in someone facing criminal allegations. For one, it's hard to keep track of everything that's illegal these days, and one false move could land you facing criminal charges. Secondly, numerous individuals get arrested and accused of crimes they didn't commit. Regardless of your situation, if you're facing criminal charges, it's time to familiarize yourself with the various criminal defense strategies that might apply to your situation.

Here are two common criminal defenses that – depending on the facts and circumstances of your case – might help your situation:

1. The admit and explain story: Using the "admit and explain" defense, a defendant will admit to the physical act the prosecution has accused them of performing. However, the defendant will offer additional explanations to reveal why the action wasn't a crime.

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It's only natural for people to go out to bars, restaurants and parties and needing to get home when the night is done. However, if they've been consuming alcohol, they might be too drunk to drive and not even realize it. Taking to the roads while drunk is unlawful, dangerous and sometimes difficult for drivers to avoid when they're not thinking clearly.

Self-driving cars, however, would eliminate the human element that's to blame for this behavior. The other benefit of self-driving cars is the fact that they would reduce the need for police to go out patrolling for operating while intoxicated (OWI) drivers, and they would eliminate the many harsh consequences of a drunk driving conviction, which include:

  • Losing your license and needing to pay large fines.
  • The risk of imprisonment and jail time.
  • The risk of being charged with negligent homicide or OWI causing injury.
  • The loss of one's license for a year and having one's vehicle impounded for refusing to take a breath alcohol concentration (BAC) Breathalyzer test.
  • The mandatory installation of an ignition interlock system after a first-offense OWI conviction for OWI with a BAC of at least .15 percent, or for a subsequent OWI offense.
  • Having penalties doubled if police catch the driver intoxicated with a minor aged 15 or under in the car.
  • The risk of multiplied penalties if two previous OWI convictions are on the record and the BAC was over .17 percent for the most recent offense.

Unfortunately, self-driving cars aren't here yet, so drivers are advised to be exceedingly careful not to get behind the wheel while intoxicated. However, if you do find yourself accused of an OWI offense -- regardless of whether you were OWI or not -- you may be able to improve your situation by planning a strategic OWI defense.

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A Wednesday, May 2 traffic stop of a vehicle that was apparently displaying an illegible rear license plate resulted in both the driver and his passenger's arrest. The routine traffic stop was conducted by an officer with the Waukesha Police Department shortly after 4 p.m. at the intersection of E. St. Paul Ave. and Maria St.

An incident report in the matter reflects that officer conducting the stop noticed that the temporary license plate that the car was displaying was illegible as he passed through an area he was patrolling. The driver apparently pulled over when requested to do so by the officer, but reportedly produced an invalid driver's license when he was asked to provide one.

It's unclear how the stop for the illegible license plate and driving permit evolved, but ultimately, the driver of that vehicle was arrested for possession of drug paraphernalia.

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An operating while intoxicated (OWI) offense in Wisconsin could mean serious consequences in the event of a conviction. If it's a first offense, the punishments will be less severe than subsequent offenses.

Here is what you can expect if you're convicted:

  • You will be required to pay substantial court costs in addition to a $150 to $300 fine.
  • In the vast majority of cases, you do not have to fear a jail sentence. However, if you were carrying a passenger under the age of 16, you could be sentenced to as many as six months in jail. Jail or prison time could also result if you hurt someone.
  • The revocation of your driving license for six to nine months.
  • In cases where your blood alcohol content (BAC) was at least .15 percent or more, you'll need to install an ignition interlock device in your car.
  • You'll have to submit to an alcohol assessment.
  • You could receive as many as six points on your license.
  • There will be other noncriminal consequences, such as the potential loss of your job (depending on what you do for work) and a sharp increase in your auto insurance premiums.

Just because police arrested you and accused of this crime does not mean you will be found guilty. You will have the opportunity to defend yourself in court. During the course of your criminal defense proceedings, understanding the potential punishments associated with an OWI offense will help you determine the most appropriate strategies to utilize in your legal proceedings.

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