Last September a Chevrolet driven by a man named Robert Kite flew off an elevated highway ramp onto the road about 300 feet below. Robert Kite, a father of six, was killed instantly. Since his blood alcohol level was 3 times the legal limit, the North Carolina ABC (Alcoholic Beverage Control) … [Read more...] about Do You Punish a Restaurant for Serving Drinks That Killed a Man?
A man drives recklessly, killing a mother and injuring her two small children. And he spends no time in prison. It doesn’t seem fair. And in fact, it isn’t. It happened in Chandler, Arizona – a man named William Epperlein failed to see a red light. He had a long history of DUI, speeding, and … [Read more...] about Can a Man Kill a Mother of 2 and Escape Arizona Prison?
A glitch in North Carolina’s penal system is short-changing the state’s efforts to reform drunk drivers. An article in The Marshall Project tells the story of North Carolina DWI offenders who are serving time – years – in jails that are meant for short-term stays. As a result, these offenders … [Read more...] about Long-Term Jail for DWI – North Carolina’s Losing Proposition
A trend that has been sweeping legislatures across the country has hit North Carolina. Currently 29 states mandate ignition interlocks for all DWI offenses, and a group of lawmakers want North Carolina to be number 30. An ignition interlock, or car breathalyzer, prevents a vehicle from starting … [Read more...] about North Carolina: Ignition Interlocks for All DWIs – With a Twist?
Drunk driving is an unusual crime for a couple of reasons. One is that, unlike other crimes, it comes with its own measurable, standardized physical evidence. Test a driver for alcohol, and you know whether or not you have a drunk driver on your hands. The other side of the coin is that the … [Read more...] about Arizona: No DUI Blood Samples from Unconscious Suspects
The message: you can’t kill someone with a vehicle while drunk and not serve jail time. That’s the essence of the bill that the North Carolina House approved recently. At the core of the argument surrounding the bill is judicial discretion – the belief that a judge should have leeway in … [Read more...] about North Carolina Wants Jail Time for All Felony DWI Deaths.
A bill just passed the Arizona Senate that would require DUI tests for any driver involved in a collision resulting in injury or death. Senate Bill 1054, like many bills associated with drunk driving, began with a tragic incident. Joseph Smith, a teenager from Phoenix, was killed in a crash last … [Read more...] about Arizona Senate Says OK to DUI Tests after Injury Crashes
It’s not easy being a judge. When the verdict has come back guilty, it’s your job to determine the punishment. The law sets down guidelines, but you are there to determine how serious the offense was, and if the sentence you deliver will deter others from the same crime. It’s not easy. In North … [Read more...] about North Carolina DWI: You Know What’s Really Aggravating?