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Hidden fines add up for Michigan DUI offenders

The popular expression "crime doesn't pay" has been around for decades. Superheroes, police officers and dads all over the world have used it but does this expression have any truth to it? Crime does not pay for the vast majority of crimes committed. A few criminals, such as D.B Cooper considering he survived his skydiving plane robbery, may be an exception to this expression but the fact is crime does not pay at all. In fact, it can cost a ridiculous amount of money, especially if the crime is drunk driving related. Whether it's a felony DUI or a misdemeanor DUI, Michigan has one of the toughest and most expensive DUI penalties in America.

Facing possible jail time, license revocation and mandatory alcohol abuse classes may be necessary upon conviction. But perhaps one of the slyest consequences that police also issue for most drunk driving charges is fines. Everything from a $350 blood test fine to a $150 fine for decontaminating property can add up rapidly for many DUI offenders. Some Michigan communities are looking at DUI arrests as a lucrative business. By helping fund police department budgets, some communities are charging criminal defendants for their labor and service involved in a DUI arrest.

Some Michigan communities charge $1.50 a minute for all the time police spend on processing the DUI charge. So for two hours of work, it would result in a fine of $180. In Ottawa County alone, the community had collected between $53,300 and $101,348 in fines over a period of a year.

For most Michigan residents facing either a felony DUI or some other form of drunk driving charges, fines can add up. Some offenders have even refused to pay some of these seemingly gratuitous fines. If charged with a DUI, offenders may want to consider seeking the counsel and advice of an attorney.

Source: Capcon, "Cities Double Dip on Drunk Driving Arrests," Annie Schieber, May 30, 2013