State lawmakers consider harsher penalties for DWI with a child

On Behalf of | Feb 20, 2018 | Drunk Driving Charges

The frequency of people driving while intoxicated (DWI) with a minor in the vehicle is increasing in Maryland. That was the testimony of the head of the Washington Regional Alcohol Program (WRAP) at a hearing held recently by the state legislature’s House Judiciary Committee.

He said that between 2012 and 2016, the number of citations for DWI while transporting a minor rose by more than 25 percent. He stated, “Someone in Maryland is arrested every 37 hours for driving while impaired, with a child in the vehicle.”

Maryland lawmakers are considering a bill that would increase the maximum possible incarceration period for DWI while transporting a minor. Delegate Barrie Cilberti of Frederick County, who proposed the bill, explains that under the provisions of the proposed legislation, that maximum period “goes from six months to one year for the first offense, and from one year to two years for the second offense.”

The bill is being co-sponsored by Dan Morhaim, a Baltimore County delegate and a physician who once worked in an emergency room. He recounted an experience where he worked to save children who were the victims of a parent’s drunk driving. The parent had driven the car into a pond.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) has spoken out in favor of the bill. A representative of MADD Maryland also testified before lawmakers.

As we’ve discussed previously, Maryland has some strict laws related to drunk driving. People convicted of DWI or a related offense can face serious penalties. If you or a loved one has been charged with DWI, it’s wise to have legal guidance as you face the justice system.

Source: WTOP, “Md. bill would double penalty for drunken driving with child passenger,” Neal Augenstein, Feb. 15, 2018

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