A new report on drunk driving laws in the United States found that Pennsylvania has some of the most lenient DUI laws and enforcement in the country.
The report, which was conducted by the personal finance website WalletHub, analyzed enforcement rules in all 50 states and the District of Columbia in 15 different metrics, such as fines and mandatory jail time.
When measured against all other states and D.C., Pennsylvania ranked 46th in criminal penalties, 45th in prison time, and 21st in administrative license suspension. When all 15 metrics were combined to rank the states from strictest to most lenient DUI laws, Pennsylvania ranked 48th out of 51, making it one of the most lenient states on DUI laws in the country. However, one major factor in the rankings was the required use of ignition interlock devices for those convicted of DUI. These devices, which drastically curtail repeat offenses, will soon be far more widely utilized in Pennsylvania following the recent passage of new laws that have not yet taken effect. As a criminal defense attorney in Pennsylvania, I find it very hard to believe that we are at the bottom of the barrel in enforcement. Stiff mandatory minimum penalties are in effect, those arrested often go to jail, and driver’s licenses are suspended for refusing blood tests even where it would be unconstitutional to impose criminal penalties. Lenient? I don’t think so, but please share your thoughts with us below.
If you would like to see the report in its entirety, click here.