The Revolving Door of DUI’s

Although the data varies for each state, the likelihood that a person who has received one DUI will go on to commit a second offense is as high as 40 percent. Sadly, there are also many people who will end up receiving a third DUI. In fact, there has been at least one case that involved a driver being arrested 25 separate times for driving while under the influence. These numbers indicate that a lot of people are not properly dissuaded by the penalties that each drunk driver faces, and that should cause each state to tighten up their DUI guidelines.

Why do People get Multiple DUIs?

There is a long list of reasons that can explain why a driver who has already paid large fines and possibly even done jail time would be arrested for another DUI. In some cases, the driver is an alcoholic, and they have a difficult time putting the bottle down. In other cases, the social stigma and anxiety that was caused by their first DUI causes them to lash out by engaging in a self-destructive behavior. For some people, however, a second or even third DUI happens because they are not paying enough attention to the signs that their body is giving them. As hard as it might be to believe, a large portion of the people who are arrested for a DUI truly believed that they were okay to drive home.

What is the Legal System Doing About this Problem?

Each state has the legal right to enforce its own penalties for a DUI, and it is clear that there are some states that take the problem more seriously than others. For example, in Pennsylvania, a first time offender is not likely to deal with any serious penalties. In fact, they will most likely avoid jail time and get to keep their license. However, if a driver refuses to take a breathalyzer test, they will lose their license for one year, regardless of whether or not they are actually convicted of a DUI.

As any Bucks County DUI attorney will tell you, Pennsylvania does enforce a mandatory interlock ignition device for drivers who are convicted of a second DUI, and this is something that most states have begun doing to deter additional DUIs. Although this does protect both the driver and everyone else on the road for a limited period of time, most of these devices are removed in less than a year. Once that happens, the driver is free to start their vehicle again while they are under the influence.

Although there are some drivers who will commit multiple DUIs regardless of the penalties that they have to face, there should still be additional measures put in place to protect the general population. For example, if a first time offender had to go to jail for at least a week, pay a fine of $5,000 and use an interlock ignition device for two years after their license was reinstated from a one year suspension, it would be much more difficult for drivers to become repeat offenders. Sadly, this level of penalty might never be supported by lawmakers because DUI convictions are a large source of income for each state. Therefore, the problem of DUIs will probably never be completely corrected unless every vehicle becomes equipped with a mandatory interlock ignition device.

Freelance author Anthony Joseph enjoys writing about important issues that impact us on a daily basis, and is contributing this article toward the fight against DUI. After a DUI arrest in Pennsylvania, your very first step should be to contact Bucks County DUI attorney Steven E. Kellis. He has 20 years of jury trial experience, and was also a former DUI prosecutor.

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