DUI Punishment too harsh?
I just read something about a kid getting a DUI and years ago I personally received two within a 16 month span. The second one I got driving across the street believe it or not. Anyhow, here’s what happened to me as a result.
First DUI, I received a fine and a PBJ. A slap on the wrist. The second DUI is where everything hit the fan. I had to hire a lawyer and pay his costs. I had to pay for an Alcohol Driver Education Program before going to court. During court the judge fiined me around $580 bucks, probation for 3 years and a 6 month alcohol treatment program, which I had to pay for.
This is just the beginning. Since I was found guilty, 12 points go to my license and the MVA gives me a summons. Again, I have to pay a lawyer to try and salvage my license. Outcome was that I got to keep my license with the installation of an interlock device, which I have to pay $55 a month for not including install and uninstall fees.
Wait it still gets better. Since I received the second DUI one month before my probation of my first DUI and had to go back to court for violation of my probation. After speaking with my Probation Officer, again whom I had to pay $65 a month to, she told me not to worry I would be O.K. A month later after my conviction on the secong DUI goes through, a cop comes to my door and arrest me for the Violation of Probation. I get dragged down to Central Booking, a terrible place to be. After three days there I finally get to see a comissioner and she tells me that I had a NO BAIL bench warrant. Meaning I can’t bail out. No bail offered for a DUI arrest? Huh? 3 weeks go by in jail before I even get brought to face the first judge. I was never even given a razor in three weeks to shave. Anyhow, the bring me in front of the judge wearing the same clothes I was arrested in three weeks prior. I tell him my situtation, I show him all the papers of all the treatment I’ve had since my arrest. AA meetings, Education program, treatment program, etc. Mind you I have never committed a crime in my life and graduated from a University. I’m guessing he wasn’t hearing any of it and sentenced me to 6 months in PRISON for a DUI offense. No priors! I appeal the sentence, but of course I still have to go to prison until my hearing comes up. 4 months into my sentence, I’m almost losing my house, lost my job of 14 years and finally get to try and get out of prison. I go in front of the District court judge and he cuts me loose almost right away. Knowing that I’ve already received enough punishment. I finally get released in my DOC clothes and have to walk home from prison. I go back to my boss, who hires me back but has to take my 14 years seniority away from me. Sniority means a lot in a union job.
Still not over because I now have a second DUI conviction and have to go back to another MVA hearing to see what will become of my license. Since my state considers me a repeat offender I automatically lose my license for one year. Then the year after I have to reinstall an interlock device for another year. How will I get to my job, but to drive illegally and jeopardize my life again? I have to live! All in all, after paying $65 to a probation officer for around 4 years, about a year and a half of interlock fees, treatment program fees, education program fees, lawyer fees, losing my license, going to prison I finally get my life back after about $20,000 and 5 years of my life. All for TWO DUI’s
Isn’t this just crazy? I would have been better off just shooting someone. I know I shouldn’t of drank and drove, but this happened years ago when I was younger. However this was way to much punishment. Why can’t they just stick the interlock in offenders cars for two years and call it a day? I could not drink and drive once when that interlock was in my car. This is a very simple solution rather than all of the above!
People die all the time and people shouldn’t be punished on what if’s. Let’s all sue Mickey D’s because they feeding us junk food which is slowly killing us. Let’s arrest poor people because the odds of them doing drugs is inevitable. We should punish people on what they do, not what if’s. My point was exactly that, the initial judge should just order an interlock device installed for a couple of years. However the dumb a**hole was that said they’re easy to go around has never had one on their car. I’m going to carry a little kid around with me to blow in the device when it goes off every 15 minutes? Huh? I’m going to let my friend blow in it? Huh? If I had a sober friend he would be doing the driving. That’s not the way they work. I have to blow in it quite long, plus it continues to go off while you’re driving. I never drank and drove once with the interlock on my car. If I wanted to drink I caught a cab. eEected officials make all the punishment in order make money for themselves!