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6/14/2024 General Assembly OKs Sosnowski, Serpa bill to extend lookback period for repeat DUI offenses
STATE HOUSE — The General Assembly today passed legislation introduced by Sen. V. Susan Sosnowski and Rep. Patricia Serpa (D-Dist. 27, West Warwick, Coventry, Warwick) that would extend the lookback period for repeat offenses of driving under the influence.

Under the provisions of the bill (2024-S 2937aa, 2024-H 7631aa), every person convicted of a second violation of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs or failure or refusal to submit to chemical tests within a 10-year period would face mandatory fine, jail time and license suspension. The bill increases that period from the current law of five years.

 “The sad truth is that many offenders, especially those who have been caught driving under the influence, don’t learn until they cause permanent injury to someone, or even death,” said Senator Sosnowski (D-Dist. 37, South Kingstown). “The problem seems to be only getting worse and this law is desperately needed to reverse this alarming and troubling trend.”

The act would take effect on July 1, 2025, but any violation of the law occurring prior to the effective date would remain subject to the lookback provisions in effect on the date of the violation.

“Every year we are faced with more senseless tragedy as our residents continue to get hurt, maimed or killed in accidents caused by driving under the influence,” said Representative Serpa (D-Dist. 27, West Warwick, Coventry). “Too many of our children, our family members, friends and neighbors have been taken away from us too early due to the criminal actions of those who get behind a wheel while drunk or high.  This bill will send a stiff message that this selfish and destructive behavior will be met with severe consequences.”

The measure now moves to the governor’s office.

For more information, contact:
Daniel Trafford, Publicist
State House Room 20
Providence, RI 02903