FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Friday, July 31, 2015
CONTACT: Sara Rabern (605) 773-3215
Montana’s Supreme Court Upholds 24/7 Program
PIERRE, SD – Yesterday, July 30, 2015, the Montana Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the Montana 24/7 Sobriety Program. The Court held the 24/7 Program pretrial testing administration is not per se unreasonable under the Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution or the Montana Constitution. The Court further held the fees associated with the 24/7 Program do not constitute pretrial punishment.
In 2005, then-Attorney General Larry Long implemented the 24/7 Sobriety Program as a pilot project in three counties in South Dakota. In 2007 the State Legislature unanimously approved the formal creation of the program. Beginning in 2010, Attorney General Jackley expanded 24/7 and transitioned the taxpayer funded program to offender pay. Currently 67 agencies participate in the program, including police departments, sheriff's offices, and the Unified Judicial System. The twice daily PBT program has had over 37,000 participants since 2005 with a pass rate of 99.1%.
“Montana and other states have adopted a form of South Dakota’s successful 24/7 Sobriety Program model. We are pleased that the Montana Supreme Court upheld Montana’s 247 Program, which is an important tool addressing addiction and reducing drunk driving on our highways,” said Attorney General Jackley.