The proliferation of diet drinks into the alcoholic beverage industry has inspired a new market. Drinks suited for young women who want to maintain their figures. Perhaps the most popular is the Skinnygirl product line released by Bethenny Frankel. Outside of officially licensed drinks, more people are including diet sodas to create mixed drinks, ostensibly to reduce their caloric intake.
This week we wanted to follow up on a prior post where a Dauphin County judge dismissed several DUI cases due to concerns over the breathalyzer machine used to measure a driver's blood alcohol levels. Essentially, the Intoxilyzer 5000EN, the machine used in the cases, had not been independently tested to ensure accuracy.
The Dallas Cowboys are in the news again for a drunk driving arrest. This time, defensive tackle Jay Ratliff has been arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated after being involved in an accident. According to an MSNBC.com report, Ratliff crashed into an 18-wheeler before hitting a guardrail. A police spokesperson indicated that Ratliff displayed several common signs to indicate drunk driving (e.g. smelling of alcohol, slurred speech).
In our prior posts we noted the importance of having an attorney if you are charged with drunk driving in Pennsylvania. We wanted to note three recent DUI arrests that we believe illustrate our point.
A recent ruling involving breathalyzer results could impact thousands of high-level DUI cases throughout Pennsylvania. A Dauphin County judge ruled that breathalyzer machines were not accurate in gauging blood alcohol levels higher than .15 percent. As such, breathalyzer evidence could not be used in prosecuting (extreme) DUI cases.
A 47-year-old man from York Township, Pennsylvania, has been behind bars since May. According to police, he was involved in a drunk driving accident that injured two pedestrians. One of those pedestrians was severely injured after the crash that occurred on May 3 around 2:15 a.m.
While the New Year's parties have ended and people settle into normal life in 2013, we look back on trends for drunk driving arrests. While final statistics are still coming in for the recent holiday season, it appears that DUI arrests are trending down. According to a report by the American Automobile Association (AAA) there were fewer DUI arrests in 2011 in Pennsylvania (50,413) compared to 2010 (52,000).
While the holiday season is meant to be festive and reflective, it may not be so for law enforcement officers across Pennsylvania. They are charged with keeping roads safe and getting dangerous drivers off the road. Also, December is deemed National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention Month, so we expect a number of people to be stopped on suspicion of DUI.
With less than a week before Christmas, our readers likely know that the public efforts on drunk driving prevention are in full swing. Additional patrols will be in force during the weekend, and more public safety advertisements will be seen on television. Indeed, we support these efforts because prevention is the key in limiting drunk driving accidents (and thus saving lives), but we also believe that DUI courts have not received the recognition deserved for their roles in changing the culture of DUI enforcement in Pennsylvania.
Every Pennsylvania driver must follow the law when it comes to impaired driving. Essentially, anyone operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 and above can be charged with a misdemeanor. The law applies to everyone, even police officers. So there is a sense of irony when a police officer is charged with a DUI.