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Delaware Docket Newsletter

DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE COURT — NEW PROLEM-SOLVING COURT COMING TO DELAWARE

“The DUI Court is a welcome addition to Delaware’s problem-solving courts and our efforts to address and respond to the root cause of an individual’s involvement in the criminal justice system.”

Chief Judge Alex J. Smalls, Delaware Court of Common Pleas.

Plans to bring the newest problem-solving court to Delaware are currently underway. House Bill No. 378, signed by Governor Jack Markell on July 18, 2012, is the impetus behind the creation of a Driving Under the Influence Court (“DUI Court”) that will fall under the purview of the Court of Common Pleas. The Court of Common Pleas will be assisted in their efforts by Tim Hubbard, the new State Judicial Outreach Liaison Officer (“JOL”). The JOL is a part-time, 30 month, grant funded position awarded to the Administrative Office of the Courts by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The JOL will assist with the creation of a DUI Court in Delaware, educate the judiciary on the issue of impaired driving and traffic safety, and provide community outreach services. Tim Hubbard, formerly of the Westtown East Goshen Regional Police Department, West Chester, Pennsylvania, has extensive experience in DUI enforcement and education and is a welcomed addition to Delaware’s efforts.

In 2011, 4,300 people were arrested for DUI in Delaware – alcohol was a factor in 37% of the 97 fatal crashes that occurred that year. National research indicates that approximately one-third of first time offenders will incur a second offense often due to alcohol related dependencies. A DUI Court seeks to hold these individuals accountable while facilitating access to treatment providers and services necessary to address alcohol related dependencies.

For further information, contact stephanie.fitzgerald@state.de.us

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