After being pulled over by police in a traffic stop in Caledonia on March 5, a man from Racine is facing a felony charge of operating a vehicle while intoxicated. This is the sixth OWI charge the 39-year-old man has received.

While the man drove south on Highway 32, a Caledonia village police officer said that he noticed the car suddenly change lanes, swerve and come to a stop in the middle of the road for no reason. The police then said that the officer turned on his lights and stopped the vehicle. While the man driving the car said that the front window could not be opened, he rolled down the back window and attempted to speak with the officer.

The police officer who stopped the car said that the man driving had bloodshot eyes and slurred speech. Furthermore, the officer smelled a strong odor of alcohol. When the police officer asked the man to exit his car for a field sobriety test, the man began to participate but stopped midway through, saying that he would be unable to successfully pass the test.

Police say that a later breath test conducted at the Racine County Jail indicated that the man had a blood-alcohol content of 0.265, which is significantly above the legal limit. The man was first convicted of OWI in 1997; later, between 1999 and 2009, he was charged and convicted with drunk driving on four separate occasions.

Drunk driving charges, even for a first offense, can be very serious in Wisconsin. In some cases, they can lead to criminal charges that involve costly fines and the revocation of one’s driver’s license. People facing OWI charges can work with criminal defense attorneys to help protect themselves from severe penalties.