Columbus, Ohio OVI lawyer, discusses Annie’s Law and ignition interlock devices

Columbus, OH– Drinking and driving can have several consequences, but one Ohio family lobbied to toughen up Ohio’s OVI laws after a loved one was killed. They were successful and in early December 2016, the Ohio legislature passed Annie’s Law.

Annie’s Law

Annie’s law is named after Annie Rooney who was killed by a drunk driver on July 4th, 2013. The drunk driver who fatally struck Annie had a few prior drunk driving charges and her license had been suspended at least three times, but she was still driving, the Columbus Dispatch reports. It is this behavior that Annie’s law targets with harsher penalties.

Nearly half of all OVI offenders will drink and drive again despite having their license suspended, so Annie’s law offers these motorists to keep their driver’s license. But there’s a catch; OVI offenders will be required to install an ignition interlock device in their vehicles to get their driver’s license back.

By passing Annie’s Law, Ohio becomes the 27th state to require ignition interlock devices for drunk driving offenders.

Why ignition interlock devices?

Mothers Against Drunk Driving says that DUI offenders drink and drive at least 80 times before they are stopped or arrested. The group which advocates for states to pass laws similar to Annie’s Law, says they help reduce repeat OVI offenses. The Centers for Disease Control estimates that ignition interlock devices reduce repeat drunk driving offenses by a third.

Basics of Ignition Interlock Devices

An ignition interlock device is like breathalyzer used by police which connected to the ignition of an OVI offender’s vehicle. Before an offender can start their vehicle, they must breathe into the ignition interlock so it can determine if they have been drinking. If they have any alcohol in their system, the ignition interlock device keep their car from starting.

If you are ordered to install an ignition interlock device in your car, you will have to pay the costs of installation and monthly recalibration fees out of your pocket, adding to the overall costs of your OVI conviction.

Some OVI offenders will benefit from having an ignition interlock device but not all offenders will. We recommend you speak with an attorney before you decide if an ignition interlock device will benefit you and help you get your license back.

If you need a defense to an OVI charge, USAttorneys recommends you get legal assistance. We can connect you with a skilled OVI lawyer near your Columbus, Ohio location to work on your defense. You can set up a consultation to learn about the best defense strategies for your case.

Data from the CDC shows that ignition interlock devices reduce repeat OVI offenses by a third.