Our law firm serves clients in Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo and throughout southwest Michigan.

Fighting a drunk driving charge could save your job

It’s time for people to reconsider negative stereotypes about people who drink and drive. Everyone makes mistakes from time to time.

In fact, several educators in the Kalamazoo, Michigan, area have recently been charged with drunk driving. This includes a middle school assistant principal and athletic director. Before he was pulled over, he had been drinking with the school district superintendent. The administrator has been charged with drunk driving and fleeing from the police.

These are not the first incidents involving Michigan educators and alcohol. Last year, a fifth grade teacher from Portage was found parked in her car on the side of the road. She had a BAC of .42, which is over five times the legal limit. Soon after, the Portage curriculum director was charged with drunk driving. Fortunately, they were not terminated from their public school positions but were reassigned to new jobs.

In Kalamazoo County, on average there are approximately three arrests for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs on a daily basis. In other words, this crime is committed all the time. Often, it is not even related to a drug or alcohol problem, but rather is caused by a normal person who has had one too many drinks.

The consequences of a drunk driving charge can be severe. Not only could it result in termination of employment, especially in the public sector, but it can have a large impact on one’s wallet. Often, fees and costs associated with a drunk driving charge, known as driver responsibility fees, run into the thousands of dollars. In addition, a conviction can cause auto insurance premiums to triple or quadruple.

It is extremely important to challenge a drunk driving charge. Police often make mistakes and the devices they use to measure one’s blood alcohol content can also be inaccurate.

Source: MLive.com, “High-profile drunken-driving arrests involving educators spark discussion in Kalamazoo-area school communities,” Julie Mack, June 9, 2012

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