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DUI Court in Wisconsin Shows Early Successes

| September 11, 2012

Madison, Wisconsin, the state’s capital, is also home to a newly launched DUI court. One of the burgeoning types of “accountability courts,” recently mentioned and endorsed in the national Republican Party platform, these courts target underlying issues like drugs, alcohol, or mental health in an attempt to halt the cycle of criminality.

In Madison, the DUI court is very new—only 50 participants thus far. But in the year that those 50 participants have been involved in the DUI court, not a single participant has been caught drinking and driving again.

And that’s significant, as these participants are quite serious DUI offenders—they’ve racked up three offenses, and have driven with a blood alcohol level of twice the legal limit. So even though early, a year without another offense is significant. (However, four have missed meetings or some other technical violation.)

The DUI court achieved this through the use of strict alcohol monitoring and testing, as well as alcohol treatment. Further evaluations will be forthcoming, but these early results are a positive first note.

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