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Michigan steps up drunk driving consequences during Halloween

According to Michigan police, between October 28th and 30th, eleven people died in last year's Halloween season. During that season, police made 261 arrests involving drunk drivers, 99 of which had a blood alcohol content of .17 or higher.

This year, the Michigan Office of Highway Safety pitched in additional federal funds to help more than 60 agencies across 15 counties in order to step up enforcement and patrols over Halloween. But what did this mean for people suspected of drunk driving this season?

According to reports, agencies across the state placed additional troops on the roadways, in some locations placing traffic stops to catch suspected drunk drivers. For people who were stopped, anyone who refused a breath test the first time was given an automatic one-year driver's license suspension.

For those motorists who were charged with drunk driving they could have seen up to 93 days in jail, a $500 fine, 360 hours of community service, 180 days driving suspension and six points on their driver's license. In an attempt to deter future drunk driving violations, police enforced a mandatory $1,000 fine each year for two consecutive years to drivers who were convicted of an OWI during the Halloween season.

As stated above, the new drunk driving consequences were carried out in 15 counties across the state, including our very own Washtenaw County. Drivers in our area saw an increase in jail time, increased fines and the possibility of restricted driver's licenses with the use of ignition interlock devices.

Source: CBS Local, "Police Boost Drunken Driving Patrols for Halloween," Oct. 25, 2012

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