A majority of Americans, over 200 million of them, own a valid driver’s license, and nearly as many are operating motor vehicles on today’s streets and highways. For the most part, drivers are careful and responsible about how they operate motor vehicles, but unfortunately, some are not. Drunk driving is a tragically common occurrence, and this may prove dangerous for the driver and the property and people around them. Driving drunk is highly illegal, and a drunk driver may get pulled over and arrested, whether or not their drunk driving resulted in property damage or injuries to other people. After that, the drunk driver will face criminal charges, and they will have to appear in a court of law. While nothing can be guaranteed here, the defendant may hire a criminal defense lawyer and try to get a more lenient sentence. This may include putting interlock devices on that person’s car, along with an interlock cup to make them more discreet. What is there to know about these ignition interlock devices? And why use an interlock cup?
Alcohol and the road
It can be said with certainty that drinking alcohol and operating a motor vehicle do not go together at all. Alcohol will impair a person’s judgment, coordination, and critical thinking, not to mention their reflexes. This means that a drunk driver will drive erratically and recklessly on the road, such as speeding, going through red lights, swerving, and more. That can make a collision with property, other vehicles, or pedestrians much more likely. Meanwhile, some people believe that they can safely drive “buzzed,” but this is not true, and some courts of law may see it as drunk driving. Buzzed driving is strictly discouraged.
The law defines “drunk driving” as operating a motor vehicle while having a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or higher. It may also be noted that some state laws will allow the arrest of a drunk driver with a BAC even lower than that. A police officer may spot a drunk driver based on that drunk driver’s erratic and sloppy driving, pursue them, and pull them over for an arrest. And as mentioned above, the act of drunk driving is itself a crime, whether or not any property or lives were harmed. A pulled over driver may perform some basic tests, and if they fail those tests, the police officers on the scene will determine that that person was driving drunk. Now that person faces criminal charges, and will have to appear in court.
Facing Criminal Court
American law is designed to allow someone facing criminal charges to have their side of the dispute fairly represented. If a person faces drunk driving charges, they may turn to a number of criminal defense law firms in their area and find a lawyer who can represent them in court. In fact, some criminal defense law firms specialize in drunk driving cases in particular, since this is so common. A client may consult a law firm’s lawyers (this may or may not incur a fee) and hire one who is to their liking.
The outcome of court will vary, and nothing can be guaranteed here about any particular case. But it may be possible for a criminal defense lawyer to negotiate with the court and have some charges dropped or changed to more minor ones, and this might allow a defendant to face lighter punishments. For example, rather than jail time and enormous fines, the defendant might pay a lighter fine and have an interlock device installed in their car, along with an interlock cup.
An interlock device will have an apparatus where a person may administer a breath test. The idea is that the convict may continue to drive their car, but before turning on that car, they must submit a breath sample and prove themselves alcohol-free. If they pass, the car turns on, and if they fail, the car will not start. During driving, the device may alert the driver, and this is the prompt to pull over and administer another test to keep the car running. An interlock cup can be placed on the breath sampler’s tube to imitate a soft drink cup, so the user can use the device more discreetly while out in the open.