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Missouri First Offense DWI May Require Ignition Interlock Device

Interviewer: Can a first time offender still get ignition interlock devices?

Kevin Roach: Yes. Prior to this recent change in the law, you didn’t see it unless it was a second offense because in Missouri, if your license is suspended for the second time then you have to have it on there for six months.

Under this new change in the law, during those first 30 days, you don’t have to be suspended for those first 30 days if you get the ignition interlock on your vehicle. There will be no period of time at which you could not drive.

A lot of people are taking that option obviously because people need to drive to go to work or school or a combination of the two. They need to get from point A to point B and they don’t want to drive on a suspended license, so even though it’s their first offense, they’re taking this ignition interlock option, which enables them to legally drive without any suspension period.

It is more expensive and you do have to have it on your vehicle for two and a half months but you’re able to drive. That’s important because people don’t want to lose their job. They don’t want to have any additional issues related to not being able to drive, like problems with their family and whatnot. I’m seeing there are more and more people even though it’s their first offense. I’ve seen people take this ignition interlock option so they could drive.

You see them a lot of times if there’s a situation where someone’s under house arrest. It’s the condition of not being incarcerated; they could be confined at home or work or a combination of the two and they use monitors in conjunction with their house arrest so that the court knows they’re not sitting around the house getting drunk or doing what they’re not supposed to be doing. That’s basically the way I see it. I see SCRAM monitors being used more and more.

Interviewer: I’m looking at an article now about it. From the traditional ankle monitor, they’re utilizing the SCRAM monitor just to keep track of people’s level. The difference between this one and the ankle monitor is that this one actually absorbs sweat. Is that correct?

Kevin Roach: Yeah. It absorbs your sweat. It will detect if there’s any alcohol in your system and also keeps tabs of the person. It shows whether they’re at home or not. It’s being used instead of a traditional ankle monitor, which just shows where someone is at and whether they’re in their house when they’re supposed to be at work during certain hours. The SCRAM has the capability of doing both that and also detecting alcohol in your system.

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Kevin J. roach is a St. Louis DWI defense attorney who has defended thousands of DWI and DUI cases in the St. Louis Metro area. Call us today at (636) 519-0085 or (866) 519-0085 for your Free Consultation!

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