New DUI Law To Take Effect In Pennsylvania

Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety

O.C.G.A. 40-5-55: Implied consent to chemical tests. O.C.G.A. 40-5-57.1: Revocation of licenses of persons under age 21 for certain offenses; issuance of new license following revocation. O.C.G.A. 40-5-67: Seizure and disposition of driver’s license of persons charged with driving under the influence; issuance of temporary driving permit; disposition of cases. O.C.G.A. 40-5-75: Suspension of licenses by operation of law for conviction of possession, distribution, manufacture, cultivation, sale or transfer of controlled substances or marijuana; or driving under the influence of the substance. O.C.G.A. 40-6-391: Addresses driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs or other intoxicating substances; penalties for first, second and subsequent convictions; child endangerment. O.C.G.A. 40-6-391.1: Nolo contendere please; requirement to attend an alcohol and drug course. O.C.G.A. 40-6-391.3: Penalty for conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs while driving a school bus. O.C.G.A. 40-6-392: Chemical tests for alcohol or drugs in blood. O.C.G.A. 40-6-393: Homicide by vehicle. O.C.G.A. 40-6-393.1: Feticide by vehicle.

Keywords: [“O.C.G.A.”,”driving”,”under”]

Slim majority of Utah voters likes tough new DUI law, with very active Mormons driving support

A new poll shows a majority – 52 percent – are in favor of the tougher DUI standard, while 45 percent oppose it. The new numbers show a slight uptick in support seen in two earlier polls in which the rates were more evenly split at 50 percent to 47 percent. Polling data show 77 percent of Democrats oppose the law, along with 54 percent of politically unaffiliated respondents. Art Brown, president of the Utah chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving, said the poll results offer no real surprises and to him, breaking down the data into specific demographic groups doesn’t really matter. Melva Sine, executive director of the Utah Restaurant Association, which fought the change, said it may be too soon to know what Utahns really think because the law won’t take effect until Dec. 30, 2018. Proponents sold the new 0.05 BAC threshold to lawmakers largely on a public safety argument, saying it would save lives by reducing DUI crashes and fatalities. As Sine notes, most DUI arrests in Utah are of people who have BAC levels well above the current legal limit. A recent Utah Commission on Criminal and Juvenile Justice report found among the 10,755 DUI arrests in fiscal year 2016, the average BAC content of drivers was nearly 0.15. Point to the tiered penalty systems adopted by Colorado and New York, where 0.05 laws are also on the books. Sine is watching the committee’s progress and says all sides want what’s best for Utah and anticipates changes that reflect and support Utah’s hospitable nature.

Keywords: [“percent”,”law”,”Utah”]

New DUI Law Takes Effect in North Dakota

While defense attorneys called for the Legislature to study how best to reform the law, the Legislature moved forward with much stiffer DUI penalties. The 2013 law changes doubled minimum mandatory penalties, mandated jail for even first offense DUI cases where the offender’s alcohol concentration is more than 0.16 percent, increased mandatory fines by at least double, stripped away the potential for using drug court treatment models in DUI cases, mandated the use of the 24/7 sobriety program both before and after a conviction, and criminalized refusing a chemical test. Drug Court had been one of the most effective tools in reducing repeated drunken driving but had been essentially written out of the 2013 DUI law. With the new refusal law, some people were being charged with and convicted of both DUI and of refusal. With all of these concerns, the DUI law was a topic of much discussion in the 2015 Legislature. Under the old law, a person could be convicted of DUI refusal if he refused either the onsite screening device or the official chemical test. The biggest change in the 2015 DUI law is that Drug Court is now an option again. Finally, the new law created a new chapter addressing the use of the 24/7 program in juvenile proceedings. The penalties are still severe and have lasting consequences, but these are all welcome changes to a DUI law that some warned would do little to reduce drunken driving. Please contact an experienced DUI attorney like Nick Thornton to discuss how this new law affects you.

Keywords: [“law”,”DUI”,”driver”]

Section of Illinois DUI law ruled unconstitutional

Law enforcement officers investigating DUI cases need a warrant before drawing blood and urine samples from a driver suspected of being impaired, a split Illinois appeals court ruled. In a 2-1 decision, the 1st District Illinois Appellate Court ruled part of the state’s DUI law unconstitutional and reversed the first-degree murder conviction of Ralph Eubanks, who was sentenced to 40 years in prison in the 2009 death of 48-year old Maria Worthon. In that case, Eubanks refused to give investigating officers permission to take blood and urine samples, but officers said state law allowed them to do so anyway. It overturned a statute allowing blood and urine tests to be taken without a suspect’s consent or a warrant when an officer has probable cause to believe a suspect was both impaired, and involved in a crash resulting in death or injury. John Sharp, a defense attorney who handles DUI cases at Sharp and Harmon law firm in Springfield, said situations would have to be reviewed on a case-by-case basis in Illinois. The court ruled there was no emergency circumstance in the Eubanks case, because officers waited for nearly three hours and did not seek a warrant in that time before forcing Eubanks to provide blood and urine samples. Sharp said the trial presented a unique set of circumstances because of the long delay and Eubanks declining the tests. He said Illinois officers should get a warrant in all circumstances if they can. The appellate court sent the Eubanks case back for retrial.

Keywords: [“blood”,”Sharp”,”officer”]