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Does economics fuel aggressive drunk driving prosecutions?

Is there a public policy agenda for tough enforcement and prosecution of alleged drunk driving offenders? A recent article provides insight. 

Specifically, the article discussed the recent release of data by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC release boldly asserts that drinking alcohol costs Americans about $249 billion every year. That total reflects several subtotals, tracking factors such as early mortality, reduced work productivity, health-care costs, and property damage to motor vehicles in alcohol-related accidents.

Although some income may be earned from alcohol taxes, that estimated $16 billion per year is far overshadowed by the negative economic impact of drinking. This might provide a financial incentive to perhaps even tougher drunk driving laws and enforcement. 

As a law firm that focuses on criminal defense, we understand that aggressive defense advocacy is often needed to counter the harsh enforcement and potential penalties implicated by charges of driving under the influence. A defense strategy should not leave any potential evidentiary attack unexplored. That analysis starts from the moment that a police officer pulled over a driver on suspicion of DUI, and also includes the procedures used in any field sobriety or breath tests. An expert may even be needed to testify to the details of breath tests, such as whether the correct chemicals were used or external factors might have disrupted the machine. The chain of evidence in a DUI arrest might also be susceptible to a challenge.

Yet strong defense advocacy must also be combined with a presentation that will be respected by judges and prosecutors. That tact may help a defendant obtain a favorable plea bargain. Our law firm has represented numerous defendants accused of DUI offenses for over 35 years and can provide this level of advocacy.

Source: Washington Post, “The Hidden Cost of Your Drinking Habit,” Christopher Ingraham, Oct. 16, 2015

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