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Revoked-license driver receives 33rd citation Saturday

Published On: Dec 04 2012 10:15:57 AM CST   Updated On: Dec 05 2012 09:04:25 PM CST
Police lights file

A Baraboo woman was stopped Saturday night for what Sauk County Sheriff’s Office said is her 33rd citation for driving with a revoked license.

According to the report, a sheriff's deputy pulled over a vehicle on Winneshiek Drive in the Town of Dellona just after 10 p.m.

A registration check on the vehicle had informed the deputy of the owner's revoked-license status, the Sheriff's Office said. The report also noted the deputy had cited the driver in the recent past.

Winona Rau-Weirich, 23, of Baraboo, was cited for operating after revocation 33rd offense.

The Sauk County Sheriff's Office said Rau-Weirich's name well known in the department.

"The deputies are familiar with her, recognize her vehicle, recognize her as the driver, and continue to stop her and issue citations," said Capt. Jeff Spencer.

WISC-TV visited Rau-Weirich at her Baraboo home to understand why she continues to drive despite the multiple citations and thousands of dollars in fines.

"I've never had my license," said Rau-Weirich. "I never got my license. And it just kind of never stopped. I don't have anyone else to sit there and drive me around. I got to get back and forth to work."

The Baraboo resident is part of a growing trend. Wisconsin Department of Transportation stats show operating after revocation citations have nearly tripled from 2005 to 2009, reaching nearly 20,000 a year. Authorities said it may be time to consider making changes to what's now considered merely a civil matter.

"Everyone agrees part of the law needs to be changed," Spencer said. "When it reaches a certain point, it needs to become criminal, where at least there's some incentive for them to not drive."

"I'd love to get my license and get this whole thing taken care of," Rau-Weirich said. "It hasn't happened yet. Bills are more important right now."

Sauk County Sheriff Chip Meister said Rau-Weirich has two pending revoked-license driving charges; one in Sauk County and another in Adams County. Both are charged as a 33rd offense, said Meister.

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