Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol can lead to significant penalties in Ohio. One conviction can change the course of a defendant’s life. The Ohio Supreme Court is considering a case in which an individual is claiming the penalties he is facing for drunk driving are excessive, ultimately violating his rights and leaving him in a precarious financial situation.
Fines are one of the most common penalties associated with drunk driving. If a defendant cannot afford to pay the fines assessed, the court may confiscate personal property. In this situation, the defendant was facing a third drunk driving offense, and since he could not afford to pay the fines associated with this violation, the court took his personal vehicle.
The defendant is arguing that taking his vehicle was excessive and unfair. The value of the vehicle was far more than actual amount of the fines he was ordered to pay. His vehicle was his only asset of any significant value, and he is unable to get to work and take care of his daily needs. His attorney argues that this act of criminal seizure amounts to constitutionally prohibited excessive fines.
Fighting for his future
The ruling in this case could determine what penalties an Ohio court can levy for an OVI or DUI in the future. In the meantime, anyone facing drunk driving charges would be wise to fight back. With the right defense strategy, it may be possible to avoid a conviction or possibly mitigate the potential penalties one is facing.