To no surprise, another driver was stopped in the state of Massachusetts and is now facing drunk driving charges. What may be a little surprising in this case is that this is the 55-year-old’s eighth drunk driving charge. With each charge, the man continues to get behind the wheel after drinking and endanger residents’ lives with potentially fatal drunk driving car accidents in Massachusetts.
According to the Gloucester Times, the traffic stop was on Route 128 in Manchester. While the South Grafton man may have lost count of his drunk driving charges, he’s not alone. In the last two years, police in Gloucester have arrested more than 25 people for multiple drunk driving offenses. This is in addition to the approximate 80 they nabbed for first-time offenses.
Our Boston drunk driving car accident attorneys understand that the state of Massachusetts has more than 26,000 drivers who have three or more drunk driving convictions. According to David Delulis with Mother Against Drunk Driving (MADD), the state of Massachusetts is typically just too lenient with the sentences that convicted drivers get. He said the punishment for a first-time offense is usually only an alcohol education class, and that’s if the driver shows remorse.
“They re-offend No. 1, because we let them, and No. 2, because they can,” said DeIulis.
Multiple drunk driving convictions can ultimately result in jail time or a suspended license, but how many convictions it takes to get to these sentences is up to the judge. They have the discretion to make these decisions, and with recent statistics they’re not coming down too hard on these drivers.
The eight-time offender in Manchester has drawn some attention, mostly because the man is also a paroled killer. The man was released from prison back in 2002 after he served 20 years behind bars and had the murder charges reduced to a second-degree offense. Even though the man had previous DUI convictions, he was able to produce a valid driver’s license.
Michael Lane with the Gloucester Police Department says that by the time a driver gets six, seven or even eight drunk driving convictions, it’s out of the hands of law enforcement officers and in the hands of the courts and judges. He adds that there is a fair amount of recidivism, but he says all crimes are like this and it’s not just drunk driving offenders. Still, courts fail to give these offenders stricter sentences to help keep them from recommitting such crimes.
According to MADD, the state of Massachusetts ranked 40th in the country for having strict laws to help prevent drunk driving incidents. That’s nothing to brag about.
As a matter of fact, Massachusetts was the very last state to reduce the drunk driving limit from a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .10 to .08. The state did this only after it received threats from the federal government, saying that it was going to keep its highway funds if it didn’t lower it.
In Massachusetts, there were nearly 120 fatalities resulting from drunk driving car accidents in 2011.
The Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman, LLC is here to support those who have been the victims of drunk driving car accidents in Boston and elsewhere throughout Massachusetts. If you or someone who is close to you has been injured in an alcohol-related traffic accident, call 1-877-617-5333 for a free and confidential appointment to discuss your case.
8 DUIs? He’s hardly alone, by Stephanie Bergman, Gloucester Times
More Blog Entries:
Drunk Drivers in Massachusetts Lightly Punished under Melanie’s Law , Boston Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Blog, February 24, 2012
Wrong-Way, Drunk Driver Kills Motorist in Car Accident on New England Thruway , Boston Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Blog, February 19, 2012