I’ll tell you what’s wrong with DUI Law: it’s a game. I just finished a DUI trial (which I won, WHO CARES?) and I can’t think of a more horrible way to try and diffuse the DUI driving situation. Between eclectic expensive judges, ambiguous laws, and a system that is just designed to generate cash for the system’s gamers in at least six ways, it’s gotta go:
1. Super High Judge Salaries. Judges in our county make $160K per year, in jobs that usually have them starting around 9:00 am and some are out the door by 11:00 a.m. Good work if you can find it, right? Not to mention that they all have their own ways of interpreting the ambiguous laws that our legislature vomits out every year.
2. Super High Cop Salaries. The top ten sheriff deputies in our county make about 110K, bet you wish you had taken a job as a cop.
3. Ridiculous fines and court costs. This part I am not making up. Court costs can MORE THAN DOUBLE the total cost of fines and court costs. When I won that DUI trial the guy had a registration ticket that he was found guilty on. The fine was $25, his total fines plus costs was $240.00!!!!!
4. DUI Counseling. Everyone is ordered to DUI counseling, to “solve” their problems, however they have never compared defendants being ordered to counseling to defendants not being ordered to counseling to determine if it is effective (let me help you with this problem: IT’S NOT EFFECTIVE). The court can order from 10 to 75 hours for these people which can cost them anywhere from about $150 to $1500 to complete (including the evaluation).
5. Breath Interlock Machines. Now they are required for everyone that has been charged with DUI (notice how you don’t have to be found guilty, they just do it … why? Because they can). Even if you are found not guilty of the DUI, you are still required to keep the machine in your car because you are still suspended. Sound about right?
6. Prosecutors and Defense Lawyers. I’ll bet you thought I was going to leave out my side of the “DUI equation” NOPE! Defense lawyers charge anywhere from $1,500 to (use your imagination). Prosecutors spend a great deal of time dealing with DUI cases. But both sides profit from slowing up the system. Believe it or not, their job is to gum up the works, challenge every proposition … fight, deny, fight, deny … I can see how someone would want to grow up doing that kind of work.
Luckily, I have a solution to the entire “DUI Problem” When a person gets arrested for DUI they don’t go to court, they go to the Secretary of State. At the Secretary of State, they install a Breath Interlock Device in your car. You are told that the device can’t register alcohol for a year. If you go a year without registering alcohol, they take it out.
If it does register alcohol, then your Breath Interlock Device assignment lasts an additional 3 months for each time it registers alcohol. Also when it registers it will call the police to your location because who knows maybe you need help, LOL. (and your car is locked there because it won’t start if it registers alcohol). So you could violate and end up having to have the device in your car forever … if you have a problem with alcohol.
Whoops … we are done. No judges to pay, you can fire two thirds of the cops because they don’t have to be everywhere at once they could just respond to cars electronically calling for them. No fines or court costs to worry about. Nobody gets any “court ordered” counseling. They would be free to seek their own so they could get that blasted expensive machine out of their car. Over time you wouldn’t need that many breathalyzers because this would change the way people think about their licenses (and the government). It would make them self governing … hmmm, has a nice ring to it.
And defense attorneys would go broke, or go into another field, like flying rocketships or wrangling cattle in the great wide open …
Law Dude, Ray Flavin, represents drivers that have been charged with DUI in McHenry County Illinois. His law offices are located across the street from the courthouse in Woodstock, IL. He longs for a time that he might fly a rocketship or wrangle cattle in the great wide open.