Michigan State Police collected statistics for drunk driving charges and arrests for 2014, and there are some very interesting facts according to a recent article at Mlive.com. Michigan’s 2014 Drunk Driving Audit confirmed that just over 35,000 individuals in the state were convicted on DUI charges in 2014. What else did we learn?
Over the last decade, arrests and convictions have dropped by 35% across the state. Does this mean fewer people are driving while under the influence? Not necessarily – people are driving less. Annual reports indicate that over the past ten years, vehicle miles driven have also dropped by about 30%. Another factor for the reduction in DUI arrests and convictions is that there are fewer traffic stops because of a smaller police force, resulting in fewer road patrols.
The good news is that over the last decade, impaired driving resulting in injury has dropped by 30%, while the number of deaths attributed to accidents caused by drunk drivers has dropped by 19%.
You might assume that men account for the highest number of DUI arrests and convictions, and you would be right. However, the number of men arrested for driving under the influence is dropping much faster than the number of women arrested for DUI. While men were three times more likely to be arrested for impaired driving in 2014 than women, the numbers prove that from 2005 to 2014, there was a nearly 40% drop in arrests of men for DUI, while the drop for women over the same time period was only 22%.
Driving under the influence is a charge someone may face whether he/she is found to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The majority of arrests involve individuals under the influence of alcohol; in fact, a whopping 96% of arrests in 2014 involved liquor rather than drugs.
The news is good and bad; regardless, no one should get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol. The problem lies in the fact that most of those who do decide to drive after having a few drinks believe in their minds they are perfectly capable of driving, when in fact they are not. Alcohol (and drugs) can significantly affect judgment.
If you made a mistake and are now facing criminal charges for driving under the influence, it is critical to consult with an experienced Michigan DUI attorney. There may be legal options to help you avoid severe punishment; in some cases, it may be possible to have charges dismissed or reduced. It’s also important your legal rights are protected, and not violated by police. Politely decline to answer questions posed by police, and call a lawyer at once.