As of July 1 of this year, the state of Tennessee has taken a significant step forward in its approach to tackling DUI offenses with the recent amendment of TCA 55-10-402. This new law offers a ray of hope for individuals charged with driving under the influence by allowing them to opt for more time spent in substance abuse treatment in lieu of jail time. Ordinarily, those convicted of a DUI 2nd offense would face a compulsory 45-day jail sentence, and could get up to 20 days of jail credit for participating in a substance abuse treatment program. The revised law now permits the participation in a treatment program to reduce the minimum jail term to just 17 days.
By giving offenders the opportunity to seek help through substance abuse treatment, Tennessee recognizes that addiction is often at the root of such offenses. This compassionate approach aims to address the core issues driving repeat offenses, ultimately making the roads safer for everyone.
By participating in a treatment program, offenders have a chance to turn their lives around, potentially breaking the cycle of addiction and reducing the likelihood of future DUI incidents.
As with any criminal offense charged, you have an absolute right to plead not guilty and a right to a jury trial. You may have other legal defenses available to you in your case. If you are charged with a DUI 2nd Offense, call criminal defense attorney, Nichole Dusche, at 615-861-1298 to explore your options and determine your best route through the legal system. As a former DUI prosecutor, Nichole can help you navigate the system.