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RI teenager gets license revoked for life

Seventeen-year-old Lyle Topa got his license revoked forever after he crashed his car into a tree while driving under the influence in Charlestown R.I.

March 2, 2012 12:00:00 AM PST
A judge in Rhode Island revoked a teenager's license forever after a serious car accident, saying his intent was to send a message about reckless driving.

"If you're going to drive dangerously in Rhode Island and you're a young person, this court is going to respond accordingly," Chief Magistrate William Guglietta from the Rhode Island Traffic Tribunal said.

According to authorities, 17-year-old Lyle Topa crashed into a tree while driving in Charlestown, R.I., in October with three passengers in his vehicle. Police stated that the teenagers were at party where alcohol was consumed before the accident.

"The law in this case allows this court to impose that penalty," Guglietta said. "If they think that more stringent penalties are important for drunk driving, then I'm assuming at some point in time, those issues will be raised with the legislature."

While no one died in the accident, one passenger remained in a coma for weeks.

Topa pleaded guilty in court to several charges, including driving over the speed limit and not wearing a seat belt. Guglietta dropped several charges as part of a plea deal.