PIERRE, S.D. –People convicted of drunk driving are less likely to re-offend after participating in South Dakota’s 24/7 Sobriety program than with traditional approaches to DUI offenders, a new study shows.
DUI offenders involved for at least 30 days in the 24/7 Sobriety program have a greatly reduced rate of recidivism compared with those in programs that use education or sanctions, the just-released report from Mountain Plains Evaluation, LLC, concludes.
For repeat offenders, “even minimal days of participation in the 24/7 Sobriety Program positively impacts recidivism rates,’’ the report said. Long-term benefits of the program will continue to be studied, it said.
The 24/7 Sobriety Program was developed in 2005 at the direction of then-Attorney General Larry Long. The program addresses underlying alcohol and drug addiction by requiring offenders to abstain from alcohol and drug use with extensive monitoring. Participants are monitored by twice-a-day portable breathalyzer tests (PBT), secure continuous remote alcohol monitor (SCRAM) devices placed on ankles and/or drug monitoring patches.
The Mountain Plains report shows the value of the 24/7 Sobriety Program, says Atty. Gen. Marty Jackley.
“Repeat DUI offenders are a cycle for law enforcement, the judicial system and taxpayers, but even more for their victims and the families of those offenders,” Jackley said. “This program helps break that cycle, keeping people out of trouble, on the job, and at home with their families.”
“Twenty nine drinking drivers killed thirty six persons last year on South Dakota roadways,” says Lee Axdahl, Director of South Dakota’s Office of Highway Safety.
“Any program that contributes to a reduction in deaths and injuries from crashes is important, and the 24/7 Sobriety Program is showing its worth in reducing the number of repeat DUI offenders out there on the roads,’’ Axdahl said. “So this evaluation represents very encouraging news for the progress of highway safety in South Dakota.”
You can find the Mountain Plains Evaluation Report on our website at: http://atg.sd.gov/News/Publications.aspx
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Friday, March 04, 2011
CONTACT: Sara Rabern, (605) 773-3215