Evidence that state DUI courts are fed up with repeat DUI offenders the news reports that Stephen Andrew Hall, of Fort Worth, Texas, has been arrested, convicted and sentenced to a staggering forty-five years in prison for driving under the influence of alcohol.
This is not the first time Hall has been to DUI court. In fact, he has been charged five times for drunk driving and the courts have said enough is enough. In his most recent drunk driving arrest his blood alcohol content level or BAC was 0.18%, twice as high as the legal limit (which is 0.08% in all states). It was reported that the Texas jury convicted him in four minutes.
After deciding to have the judge determine is fate, Hall was sentenced to 45 years, but he will be eligible for parole after 11 years.
What does the state of Texas say about the recent DUI penalties assessed against Stephen Andrew Hall? The local assistant district attorney told CBS: “The 45-year sentence was fitting considering his prior DWI history. [The] sentence ensures that he will not be able to drive a vehicle on our roads for a very long time.”
Maybe other states will follow in Texas footsteps? We might find out later this year when a court in New Jersey hears the case of Anderson Sotomayor who has been arrested for DUI five times in the past five weeks and has had his license suspended 23 times.
Tough sentencing for DUI comes on the heels of another DUI story out of Southern California where courts have routinely begun to require DUI defendants who have been convicted of a second DUI to install an ignition interlock device or IID. This new requirements has become common, even for defendants who are not arrested and convicted of DUI with a high blood alcohol concentration. This new requirements also heightens the cost of the DUI conviction as the defendant is required to install and maintain the device.
The message from many states throughout the Union is if you drink and drive, you will face severe fines, penalties, and potentially lengthy jail sentences. Just ask Stephen Andrew Hall.