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Wednesday, November 23, 2016

What Is A Driving While Impaired (DWI) Court And How Is It Different?

When a member of our society chronically repeats a dangerous behavior, even once they've been punished for it, they may need special help to change. At the same time the public must be protected.

What Is A DWI Court?

The traditional court system has proved to be less than effective when dealing with some repeat drinking and driving offenders. Despite the fact that DUI and DWI are extremely serious charges, most sentences do not attempt to address the root causes for individual repeat behaviors. DWI court is designed to be an alternative for those hardcore offenders, who are defined as individuals who drive with a blood alcohol level of 0.15 percent or greater, or who have been arrested for or convicted of driving while intoxicated after a prior DWI conviction.

DWI court is an accountability court based on the drug court model. It combines intensive supervision with accountability checks and balances and long-term treatment that examines the history and causes of the offender's alcohol abuse. The tone is non-adversarial, with law enforcement, legal representatives and treatment providers acting as a team in an effort to change individual behavior permanently, and, in doing so, perhaps save lives. Participants undergo frequent and random alcohol or drug testing, must appear before court regularly and are held accountable for their actions. In return, jail time or other penalties may be deferred or mitigated.

Does It Work?

There are a growing number of DWI courts in the US. That's because they seem to work, with recidivist rates of just 15% (compared to a 35% chance of re-offending for those who pass through the traditional court system). Studies note that they also have the potential for reducing the vast expanse incurred from incarceration, lengthy and repeated traditional court proceedings, and the loss of life and property that may result from repeat DWI offenses.

Although public sentiment can fluctuate on the topic of DWI court, it's telling that the concept is fully supported by organizations such as MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving), The National Sheriff's Association and the American Judge's Association.  

Need Help With Your DWI Arrest Charges?

If your arrest occurred in Westchester County, NY, contact our DWI lawyers at this office:

Acocella Law Group
2900 Westchester Ave #405
Harrison, NY 10577

If your arrest occurred in Queens, NY, contact our DWI lawyers at this office:

Acocella Law Group
31-19 Newtown Ave #901c
Queens, NY 11102

If your arrest occurred in Long Island, NY, contact our DWI lawyers at this office:

Acocella Law Group
20 Crossways Park Dr #210a
Woodbury, NY 11797