An ignition interlock device is a dashboard mounted breathalyzer, which prevents a vehicle from starting unless the driver blows a 0.00 BAC reading. In many cases, it is a court-mandated penalty in Roswell and Alpharetta counties, for those who retain their license after a DUI conviction. After a DUI charge, an administrative license suspension could follow (if it was not successfully fought within 10 ten days of the charge). License suspension may also be a judicial penalty, so the issue of IIDs only comes into play after any relevant license suspension expires. Although uncommon, IIDs might be installed in the vehicles of first-time offenders. If a person charged with DUI receives a temporary driving permit, their vehicle may be fitted with IID while they are using such a permit.
Second-time DUI offenders within a five-year span will be required to have an IID installed in their vehicle for a 12-month span, after a mandatory 4-month license suspension. If the device registers a blood alcohol content above 0.00, the driver's probation officer will be alerted as they have access to every reading taken. In this case, the probation officer will most likely file a court petition to strike the driver's probation or revoke it to an extent. Please note that this would take effect not only for BAC readings above the legal limit but for ANY BAC reading at all, even .01. Testing positive at all is considered a failure of the IIDs breathalyzer test. DUI probationers are prohibited from consuming any alcohol whatsoever, so even the smallest positive reading will constitute a probation violation on this count. In addition to the initially required sample, the device needs additional samples throughout the course of a ride. Failure to provide an additional sample will not halt the vehicle, however, it will be logged and reported the driver's probation officer.
IID technology has become increasingly sophisticated over the years. Original devices did not require additional samples. Most are equipped with cameras, to ensure the person's whose breath is used to start/continue operating the vehicle is the driver themselves. This has had certain unintended positive consequences, like allowing police to get a shot of car thieves.
The driver is personally responsible for financing the costs of the IID. These devices are normally rented out and not purchased, so the driver will pay $100-200 at the outset as well as a monthly rental fee of approximately $70. There could maintenance and calibration charges. The driver must also pay for installation of the device, and they may incur additional fees if they drive a newer car whose manufacturer has not yet released the vehicle's wiring information. If the vehicle is a luxury or classic car, an auto shop may refuse to install the device for fear of damaging a very expensive vehicle. Installation normally takes about two hours. Make sure to fully brief an auto shop on the make, model and year of your vehicle.
Although IIDs are somewhat sophisticated and designed to not be easily manipulated or tampered with, they do have at least one notable shortcoming. Because they are designed to test for any alcohol group, they cannot distinguish between isopropyl and ethyl alcohols. Isopropyl alcohols are found in hand sanitizers, gel, mouthwash and hand wipes. One of the most common culprits of false readings is mouthwash, (understandably, since most people aren't in the habit of drinking hand sanitizer or gnawing on hand wipes.) However, there is a laundry list of culprits. Although not common, there have been recorded incidences of each leading to a false positive. One incident is all it takes to throw someone's probation into whack and potentially devastate their record. IIDs are hardly gathering false positives left and right, however they have registered failures for mouthwash as mentioned, spicy foods, yeasty foods (such as cinnamon rolls), Chloraseptic spray, and ketogenic diets. Because they are not a widespread problem, the court could have a hard time believing a driver's false positive defense. This is why exceptional and competent legal representation is of the utmost importance at every step of the way. A false positive carries serious consequences if not successfully refuted in court.
In the event that a driver fails an IID test, a probation warrant could be issued. A probationer may spend up to 30 days in jail awaiting a hearing, as bond is very uncommon in these cases. Anyone who is on probation is advised to avoid alcohol together so as to avoid the severe consequences. Further, do not tamper a device in any way or present a false record of data, as this could result in criminal prosecution.
If you face DUI charges or a probation violation in the Roswell-Alpharetta area, do not hesitate to contact Roswell DUI attorney Richard Lawson for a free consultation of your case. As a former DUI prosecutor, Richard Lawson has a unique understanding of the intricacies of DUI cases and his practice is informed by 20 years of experience. He is fully prepared to review your charges and present an aggressive defense on your behalf in court. Contact the Law Offices of Richard Lawson as soon as possible.