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Drunk driving bill fails to pass in Virginia

| Mar 8, 2018 | Drunk Driving (DUI)

A bill allowing Virginia residents to drive while under the influence on their own property was killed in the state House. The bill had originally failed to get out of committee in the Senate, but it was reconsidered in February. After passing through committee, it was approved 37-3. However, while in the House Courts of Justice subcommittee, it encountered resistance from a variety of traffic safety advocates.

According to a representative from the Washington Regional Alcohol Program, the legislation was a slippery slope bill. He said that by passing the law, it could create confusion as to the state’s drunk driving laws. Proponents say that it would prevent situations in which people would be charged with DUI while drinking alcohol in a vehicle at home. One man was actually charged with driving under the influence while listening to music in his vehicle that was parked in his driveway.

If a person is charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, there are many penalties he or she may face. For instance, it is possible that an individual could spend time in jail, pay a fine or be asked to perform community service. It is also possible that an individual may be responsible for paying legal fees and court costs.

An attorney may be able to help those who are charged with drunk driving. For instance, it may be possible to ask for evidence to be suppressed in an effort to weaken the case against an individual. Witness testimony or the contents of a police report may be subject to challenge in court. By casting doubt on such evidence, it may be possible to convince a jury to acquit an individual or create leverage to negotiate a plea agreement in a DUI case.