September 25, 2009

Lawmaker gets second DWI in single year

Authorities in Wisconsin say a state lawmaker has been arrested for allegedly driving while intoxicated for the second time in nine months.

The Wisconsin State Patrol said state Rep. Jeff Wood, an independent from Bloomer, was arrested Wednesday in the town of Rib Mountain for allegedly driving under the influence of various prescription and non-prescription medications, the Wisconsin State Journal reported Friday.

Wood, who previously was charged with third-time intoxicated driving after being arrested in December, voted in the state Assembly last week, prior to his most recent arrest, to make fourth-offense intoxicated driving a felony in the state. However, the new rule would not apply to his situation because his arrest took place before the bill would take effect.

The lawmaker was arrested Dec. 12 when Columbia County authorities discovered his car had crashed into a road sign with the official urinating nearby. Police said they discovered two bags of marijuana in the lawmaker's car. He has pleased not guilty to the charges stemming from that case.

Records show Wood was convicted of drunken driving in 1990 and 1991, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.