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Tennessee seeks drunk driving conviction sharing

Among the potential consequences that a Tennessee resident arrested on suspicion of driving while impaired may face is the installation of an ignition interlock device. An IID is used as an attempt to prevent repeat offenses by persons convicted of drunk driving charges. It requires a breath sample to test a driver’s blood alcohol content before a vehicle can be started and driven.

A bill making its way through the Tennessee legislature would require that any driver convicted of a second DUI offense have an IID installed. Another interesting component of the bill is the required reporting of DUI convictions to courts and judges throughout the state. The reason for this requirement is to ensure a driver’s prior convictions are known so that a repeat offender is not allowed to be charged with a first offense multiple times.

Mississippi is taking similar action. However, the bill in Mississippi would require ignition interlock devices for drivers convicted of even a first drunk driving offense. The IID use period would be 120 days. If passed, the bill would also extend the length of time that a person’s right to drive is suspended. Currently a suspension lasts 90 days but would double to 180 days. The Mississippi law would also require reporting to federal and state agencies.

Being arrested for drunk driving can lead to many challenges for Tennessee residents. Talking to an experienced DUI defense attorney may prove beneficial to a driver who needs to better understand the situation and the available options.

Source: WBRC.com, “TN, MS pass mandatory ignition locks, better reporting on DUI,” March 2, 2016

 

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