Roger Goodman, Democratic Representative of Kirkland, is heading House Bill 1276 that is aimed at toughening DUI laws. Goodman suggests that Bill 1276 fills DUI law gaps and will strengthen current drunk driving laws. According to lawmakers, the bill’s primary goal is to keep roads safe and to detour repeat DUI offenders.
A lot of different areas of DUI laws are covered in the lengthy bill, with several of the proposals focused on improving the existing ignition interlock devise laws;
- — Requiring the courts to notify the Department of Licensing when a defendant is required to use an ignition interlock device (IID) and notifying officials when restrictions are lifted and;
- — Requiring an IID restricted driver, who has agreed not to drive, to sign an affidavit of non-driving, which must be filed with the court.
Another area of the proposal deals with the marijuana open container law;
- — Making it a traffic infraction for a person to have an open container of marijuana in the main compartment of a vehicle. (The marijuana must be in a closed sealed container from a 502 retailer, and if the marijuana is in a broken sealed container or a non 502 container than the individual shall be cited with a traffic infraction).
At a public hearing held days ago, many legal professionals suggested the bill needs revising and reworking in order to be effective. Bill 1276 is scheduled to be presented at an executive session of the House Committee on Public Safety next Friday
Earlier this week Governor Jay Inslee and a bipartisan group of lawmakers shared their proposal to toughen DUI laws and penalties. Gov. Inslee stated the changing of the DUI laws will be, “the most aggressive, the most effective, the most ambitious” to have transpired in the State of Washington.
In short, Inslee’s proposal would change DUI laws by;
1. DUI charges would need to be filed by the city or State of Washington within 48 hours (currently it may take months for DUI charges to be filed).
2. Washington State will install ignition interlock devices into vehicles of individuals that have been charged with DUI. The vehicle will not be released to the individual until the installation is complete and functioning properly.
3. Deferred sentencing will no longer be an option for an individual charged with DUI.
4. A person found guilty of a DUI for a second time within 7 years will face 6 months in jail or may enter a sobriety program while simultaneously wearing a transdermal bracelet that detects any alcohol consumption.
5. An individual found guilty of a DUI for the third time within 7 years will face 1 year in jail or may enter a sobriety program while simultaneously wearing a transdermal device. Additionally, the individual would be issued a special driver’s license that would restrict them from purchasing alcohol from restaurants, bars, and stores for 10 years!
Continue to follow David O Defense for continuous updates on Washington State DUI laws changes.