Some Lesser Known Penalties and Punishments in DUI/DWI Cases

DUI conviction brings punishments that range from accumulating points on driving license, fines to joining a course in drunk driving to jail sentenced. But the court has some other ways too to punish a DUI convict. Some of them are detailed below:

Ignition-Interlock Device: If your alcohol level was over 15%, no matter it is your first offense, the court can order to install the device in your vehicle. Before starting your vehicle, you are required to blow into the device to check the alcohol level, if your alcohol level is above the set limit in the machine, it will not let the engine start.

Moreover, if you have that device installed in your vehicle you will have to pay the rent as well as installation charges that range from $70 to $100 excluding the maintenance and calibration charges to the authorized companies.

It is almost impossible to cheat the device because they are designed keeping in mind the security requirements, further tempering these devices have more severe punishments that will make your situation worse. All your activities are recorded on the device and you have to pass the rolling test on at a regular interval.

Forfeiture of the Vehicle: If you are caught in a repeated DUI/DWI case, then the court can order to seize your vehicle for a specific time. The strictest punishment is the forfeiture of your vehicle. If you are involved in an accident while drunk driving or a minor was in the car, the court can order to sell your vehicle. But you can challenge the forfeiture within 30 days. If you are not the owner of the car, then the real owner of the vehicle can appeal to the court with clear evidence of his or her ignorance of his or her car used for drunk driving and can get the vehicle back under the “innocent owner” defense.

Community Service: The court may punish by ordering you to serve the community; it is a common form of punishment in a drunk driving case. This gives violators the opportunity to pay back to the society for their criminal activity by doing something valuable for the society.

The court can ask you to tell about the consequences and dangers of DUI or can order you to clean up the highways. Even the jury can order you to do some charity work, especially for the DUI victims.

The number of days of community service varies from state to state, but it normally 150 to 600 hours. If the convict doesn’t want to serve the community, the offender can purchase the hours, it means the convict can pay instead.

Sheriff’s Labor Assistance Program (S.L.A.P.) Superior and Municipal Court Judges have the leeway of sentencing non-violent offenders to work instead of sitting in a jail cell. This labor includes serving nonprofit organizations, cleaning highways, park maintenance or other community based programs. Often nonprofit organization or government agencies utilize this program. But before ordering you to participate in a SLAP, your criminal record will be checked. Only minor offenders like convicted of shoplifting, drunk driving offenses etc. are allowed to participate in this program. Moreover, there are many rules and regulation; you will have to follow while serving your SLAP sentence.

Residential Treatment (Rehab): If you are a convict of repeated DUI crime, the court can order you to take part in a Residential Treatment Program. The offender has to spend some days as ordered by the court in the rehab that ranges from 10 days to 24 days. Such punishments provide a chance to the alcohol or drug addicts to start their life afresh.

Remote Alcohol Monitor: The full name is Secure Continuous Remote Alcohol Monitor (SCRAM) and a bit new approach towards drunk driving cases. If the court orders to a DUI convict to refrain from alcohol as a part of your trial phase, monitoring the liquor level can be incredibly difficult. The DUI convict will have to wear the bracelet type device on his ankle that takes the reading of the alcohol level through perspiration. It can even take reading from a very low amount of perspiration that is difficult to notice with naked eyes. It sends the gathered reading to a central monitoring place. The convict will have to wear it until the end of the case of even after it, as the court orders.