Since 1981, offender Robert Landis has continued his one-man DUI crime wave; unfortunately, he was stopped only after he took a life. Landis pleaded guilty this month to homicide by automobile for the death of Liam Crowley, age 24, which happened a year ago.
Thomas Hogan who is the District Attorney of Chester County is proposing stiffer and higher mandatory minimum sentences for drunken drivers whoi are repeaters of the violation. He believed that this approach would minimize its occurrence after their failure to come up with solutions before t a death occurred.
He said that the behavior of drivers needs to be controlled. It is difficult to just legislate resulting from the behavior of people who drink and drive unmindful if they take a life. Of course, after they do, it is too late to undo the damage.
Intoxicated driving is exacting a great toll on our country. Records showed that nationally, about 10,000 victims die every year as a result of drunken driving. In Pennsylvania alone, about 400 are killed annually and these statistics donot include the injured.
Law enforcement officials are not remiss in dealing with this problem. In fact in Pennsylvania, there are more than 50,000 arrests for drunken driving made every year. Records proved that nearly a third of those arrests are repeat offenders.
What can be done if arresting offenders will not be able to solve the problem and penalties that are increased will only be applied after a death has occurred? The citizens can study the civil code and demand that cars used in such a crime must be forfeited because they were used as an instrument of a crime.
Many jurisdictions, including Pennsylvania, have been using civil forfeiture for many kinds of crimes. This concept to become tougher just needs to be expanded to include those who drive their cars while intoxicated.
Civil forfeiture is such an attractive option for it is not tied to the criminal prosecution of a case. There is no need to wait for any process as upon an arrest for drunken driving, the vehicle would be kept in police custody. If this policy had been in effect, Landis would have had no car to drive – no car, no DUI, no death.
The criminal code is intended to control bizarre behavior. Any conduct that falls below legal standards is punishable. However, if the criminal code is inadequate in controlling behavior, people need to look elsewhere to protect themselves against those crazy criminals.
Another tool to fighting against DUI is using the civil code and forfeiture actions. The more options to battle drunken driving and confronting this problem, the better measures will be implemented.
The madness of spreading crime in the street is growing; good meaning citizens must unite to stop it before more lives are lost.
Accident victims have rights. If you were injured in a accident, contact experienced?accident attorney now for free consultation. He will protect the rights of you and your loved ones. You may be entitled to financial compensation for economic damages, as well as pain and suffering.
Source: Philly Com