Knowledgeable Cranston DUI Attorney Ready To Serve You

A driver in Cranston tested for possible DUI.

If you or a loved one has been arrested for driving under the influence in Cranston, Rhode Island, call an aggressive Cranston DUI Lawyer at Abilheira Law, LLC today, 401-245-5100!

Cranston DUI Law Firm

Cranston is the third-largest city in Rhode Island and has an equally large police department, eager to enforce the law and arrest those suspected of drunk driving.  If you drive through Cranston, whether on Elmwood Avenue, Oaklawn Avenue, Cranston Street, New London Avenue, or Broad Street, you could find yourself on the wrong end of a DUI charge. Don’t fight a Cranston DUI charge alone, call an experienced Cranston DUI attorney at Abilheira Law, LLC today!

DUI Arrests in Cranston, Rhode Island

Reasonable suspicion to pull over the vehicle

When a Cranston police officer observes a motor vehicle being operated in a manner consistent with drunk driving, the officer must only have a reasonable suspicion to pull over the driver.  This reasonable suspicion can arise from an equipment violation, such as not having headlights or taillights illuminated, or from a moving violation, such as speeding, not using a turn signal, or crossing the centerline.

Indicia of Alcohol

Once the officer approaches the vehicle, they must then notice some sort of indicia of alcohol to allow them to ask you to get out of the vehicle.  Cranston officers will be looking for a number of things like the odor of alcohol, empty alcohol bottles or containers, as well as the driver’s appearance and/or demeanor: bloodshot eyes, watery eyes, and slurred speech. Police officers are not required to “give you your rights” at this stage and therefore can also use any statements you make against you.

Field Sobriety Tests (FST’S)

Once a motorist is out of the vehicle, the police will then ask the driver to take a series of standardized field sobriety tests.  These include the horizontal gaze nystagmus (HGN) sometimes referred to as the “pen test,” where the officer will ask the driver to follow a pen with their eyes only.  The next FST is the one-leg stand, where a motorist is asked to balance on one leg while counting.  The final standardized FST is the walk and turn test, where the driver is asked to make a series of the heel to toe steps on a line.  With each test, the Cranston police will be looking for a number of “clues” which would indicate impairment.

In Rhode Island, there is no penalty for refusing to take the FST’s, which is why our Cranston DUI lawyer advises clients not to submit to these tests, as they are nearly impossible to pass and can only lead to move evidence for the prosecution.

Preliminary Breath Test (PBT)

It is common for police officers to ask motorists to take a preliminary or portable breath test. This is a breathalyzer given on the side of the road, in an effort to gauge a driver’s level of intoxication.

In Rhode Island, the only penalty for refusing a PBT is a civil traffic citation that carries an $85.00 fine. With this minor penalty in mind, our Cranston DUI defense attorney advises clients not to submit to a PBT, as they are inherently unreliable and are not subject to the same scrutiny as the breathalyzer machines located within a police station.  Again, submitting to a PBT will only give prosecutors more evidence against you in your DUI case.


Based on what the Cranston police officer has observed and learned from your driving, appearance, demeanor, statements, and performance on the FST’s and PBT, he will likely determine that you are under the influence of alcohol and arrest you for suspicion of DUI.  At this time, you should be read your rights for use at the scene and will then be transported to the Cranston Police station.

Chemical Test

At the Cranston Police station, you will then be asked to take a breathalyzer or chemical test.  This test gauges your blood alcohol content/concentration (BAC). At this stage, you will be notified of several additional rights, including the right to make a confidential phone call.  Call an experienced Cranston DUI defense lawyer at Abilheira Law, LLC today and let our lawyer give you the right advice right away.  We are available 24/7 at 401-245-5100.


If you refuse to take a breathalyzer, you will face a civil offense for Chemical Test Refusal.  You will likely also be charged with a DUI- BAC Unknown.

If you submit to a Chemical Test and blow over a .08% BAC, you will be charged with a DUI based on your BAC level.

Prosecution of DUI and Chemical Test Refusals in Rhode Island

If you have been arrested for a DUI in Cranston, Rhode Island, your case will be prosecuted by the Cranston City Solicitor in the Kent County District Court located at 222 Quaker Lane in Warwick, Rhode Island.

If you have been charged with a chemical test refusal in Cranston, Rhode Island, your case will be prosecuted by the Attorney General at the Rhode Island Traffic Tribunal located at 670 New London Avenue in Cranston, Rhode Island.

Both City Solicitors and Attorney Generals are zealous in their prosecution of DUI and refusals in Rhode Island and will seek to impose harsh sentences on those they believe were operating under the influence of alcohol. Our Cranston DUI attorney goes head to head with Cranston prosecutors every day and knows what it takes to beat these charges, contact us today and get our team working for you.

Penalties for DUI Crimes in Cranston Rhode Island

Man in Cranston driving under influence of alcohol.

A DUI charge can seriously derail your personal life, career, education, reputation, and freedom.  Anyone who is convicted of a Chemical Test refusal or a DUI crime in Cranston, Rhode Island will face harsh penalties including possible jail time, license suspensions, costly fines, and counseling. Hiring an aggressive and winning Cranston DUI attorney is your first vital step.

The specific penalties you may face will depend on your BAC at the time of arrest, any prior alcohol-related offenses, whether an accident was involved, and whether anyone was injured. For example:

First Offense DUI Penalties in Cranston, RI include:

  • Up to one year in jail
  • License suspension: 1-18 months
  • 10-60 hours of community service
  • $100-$500 fine
  • Mandatory costs and assessments
  • DUI school and/or alcohol counseling
  • Possible ignition interlock device

Second Offense DUI Penalties in Cranston, RI include:

  • Mandatory imprisonment: 10 days to 1 year
  • License Suspension 1-2 years
  • Up to a $1,000 fine
  • Mandatory costs and assessments
  • Mandatory drug and/or alcohol treatment
  • Mandatory ignition interlock device

Third Offense DUI Penalties in Cranston, RI include:

  • Mandatory imprisonment for up to 5 years
  • License Suspension 2 -3 years
  • Up to $5,000 in fines
  • Mandatory costs and assessments
  • Mandatory drug and/or alcohol treatment
  • Mandatory ignition interlock device

Here is more on specifics on DUI penalties in Rhode Island.

Don’t Fight Your Cranston DUI charge alone, call Abilheira Law, LLC today!

Don’t accept these harsh penalties. Fight these charges with an experienced Cranston DUI lawyer from Abilheira Law, LLC. Our legal team also handles domestic abuse cases. Call our lawyer at 401-245-5100 or contact Abilheira Law, LLC today!