Interviewer: Does the DMV administer the interlock device or that’s handled by the court?
David: Both can do that. Most times, the interlock device is required for second offenses. Sometimes, second offenses can be reduced to a first offense. A person with: A second first or a true second; or an aggravated charge, which an over .16; or a police chase; or a serious bodily injury; or underage children in the car would require the interlock device.
A high level of alcohol would require the interlock device. A second offense will require the interlock device. That can be ordered by the court. It can be ordered by the administrative hearing up in Concorde.
What Are the Range of Penalties from Losing the DMV Hearing and Potentially Losing the Court Case?
Interviewer: How often are you able to win the DMV hearings? How often are you able to get a case dismissed or have penalties reduced?
David: Percentage wise, I win more court trials than I do administrative hearings. This is because of the facts I described upfront with respect to how more difficult the administrative hearings are from a defense point of view.
Frequently what will occur especially in refusal cases, client refuses to test and is exposed to a six month loss of license. That has to run consecutively after the sentence that would be imposed if the client is convicted.
Plea Bargains Offered in Refusal Cases Generally Include a Three-Month Suspension
The client is confronted with six months suspension for a refusal and confronted by having a trial whose outcome is subject to minimum penalties. The minimum loss could be as short as three months. The local friendly prosecutor will make an offer that if the client pleads guilty to the DWI, he or she will get the minimums, which are the three months loss of license and the drunk driving program.
We will withdraw the administrative suspension. It’s basically option 1; plead guilty and get the three month loss of license. Option 2 is get a trial, you might win, you might lose but you’re substantially more likely to lose the administrative hearing in which case you’re out with six months.
If you lose trial, you’re out for nine months or more. There is some horse trading that takes place with the administrative suspensions especially with the refusals where it’s on an after time.
What Are the Requirements of the Impaired Driver Care Management Program?
Interviewer: What does the drunk driver program entail?
David: Before a person can get their license back after a DWI conviction, they have to complete what is now called the impaired driver care management program. The program consists of 20 hours of classroom setting with respect to DWI. In some cases, a one on one counseling with a licensed alcohol drug abuse counselor is required, depending on how the evaluation process works out.