New Strict Anti-DUI Device Legislation Introduced in California

Gerald “Jerry” Hill is a Democratic member of the Senate who represents the 13th district for California. Throughout a career encompassing over 20 years as a public servant he was on the San Mateo City Council, serving one term as Mayor, as well as the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors. During his tenancy in the state legislature, Hill’s emphasis has been concentrated on job creation, consumer protection, saving taxpayer monies, the improvement of environmental issues and public health, accompanied by facilitating schools to produce the workforce of the future.

Hill will now introduce new legislation that will necessitate any individuals who are convicted of a second drunken driving offense to put a new blood alcohol level testing device into their vehicles. Hill, a long-time advocate against drinking and driving introduced the bill which would rigorously crack down on repeat DUI offenders. According to Hill’s office, presently, at least 24 states call for ignition interlock devices for individuals who repeat an offense of driving under the influence (DUI). 17 states already do so for first-time offenders that have been convicted of the crime. An ignition interlock device is an apparatus that when attached to a car’s ignition necessitates a breath sample in advance of the engine being able to start. The device stops the car’s engine from starting if it detects a blood alcohol level that exceeds a pre-set limit. In the event of a third DUI conviction the penalty would be the mandatory use of the device for two years; and a fourth DUI conviction would incur the same penalty but for a period of three years. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) suggested that each state institute these devices for persons convicted of DUI.

In a phone interview in December, Hill said that “The law is so in favor of repeat DUI (driving under the influence) offenders.”

As an assemblyman, in 2010, Hill composed DUI law AB 1601, which was previously signed by former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger before being further amended after his departure. The new law certifies that judges in California have the capacity to revoke driver’s licenses for repeat DUI offenders for a period of up to 10 years. The new law went into effect on January 1, 2012.

In California there were 161,074 DUI convictions in 2009, the most recent year in which statewide data is accessible. 27 percent, or 43,432, of those convictions were for repeat offenders According to Hill’s office. Based on further research there were 195,879 arrests in 2011. In 2012, almost 280,000 devices were fitted and are now operating in the United States, including approximately 24,000 in California, based on statistics provided by Hill’s office.

As quoted by Hill, “This (new) bill is sort of a follow-up to that effort to do something about the staggering numbers, the 40,000 annually repeat DUI offenders,”
In addition, if the legislation passes, this bill would require repeat DUI offenders to complete a special ignition lock program in addition to completing the DUI prevention course required by present law.

Legislation requiring the ignition interlock, even after one DUI conviction and as well as for drivers who are only slightly found to test above the legal limit should be a big help in preventing accidents, according to The NTSB.
Related reading on : Law AB 1601: Click Here


Since the consequences of a conviction for DUI can be harsh, it is crucial that if one is charged with a DUI charge, to immediately contact a reputable DUI attorney, with experience in this field to properly handle the case.

Mr. Cohen is a board certified criminal trial lawyer rated AV by Martindale Hubbel (pre-eminent) and a “Super Lawyer” recognized as being in the top 5% of his specialized field (criminal trial law) among Florida lawyers. He is considered a specialist by the Florida Bar in his field. Mr. Cohen has tried scores of cases over his 35 year career and is a member of the Florida and New York Bars. He is also admitted to practice in the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh and Second Circuit.

If you are being investigated for, and/or charged with DUI and are in need of a criminal defense lawyer in the Broward, Dade, or Palm Beach County areas who specializes in the defense of DUI cases, Mr. Cohen’s office can provide you with the skilled representation you need.