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May 2024

Mothers Against Drunk Driving and SC Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services Announce New DUI Law

Acting Director Jodi Gallman speaking to the cameras.

COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA - Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) South Carolina and the South Carolina Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services (SCDPPPS) held a press conference on May 17, 2024, at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center.

Effective May 19, 2024, the “All Offender Law” will require all drivers convicted of driving under the influence (DUI) - regardless of their Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) - to participate in the Ignition Interlock Device (I.I.D.) Program. Previously, participation was optional for DUI first offenses with a BAC below .15.

The South Carolina Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services administers the participation of drivers in the Ignition Interlock Device (I.I.D.) Program.

“PPP remains committed to protecting the public, and we are hopeful that this new law will have a tremendous impact in reducing DUI traffic fatalities,” said SCDPPPS Acting Director Jodi Gallman.

The new legislation was signed into law by Governor Henry McMaster in May of 2023 in an effort by South Carolina lawmakers to reduce the number of DUI incidents and save the lives of residents and visitors to the state.

”We are so excited to see this strengthened interlock law finally go into effect,” said MADD Regional Executive Director Steven Burritt. “This was our number one legislative priority for years and is badly needed as we’re seeing drunk driving deaths rise dramatically. This will save many lives every year.”

Representatives from the South Carolina Department of Public Safety (SCDPS), the largest law enforcement agency in the state, were present at Friday’s press conference showing their support of the new law. Data provided by SCDPS shows that in 2023, there were 5,319 collisions in South Carolina investigated and determined to involve alcohol or drugs. Of those, 367 people were killed and 3,372 individuals were injured.

"In my more than 35 years of law enforcement, it’s been my experience that even our best efforts to convince the motoring public of extreme dangers and tragic consequences of impaired driving too often fall short,” said SCDPS Director Robert G. Woods, IV. “We know the law alone won’t solve the DUI problem, but we are encouraged that the ignition interlock requirement for more offenders will be the much-needed deterrent needed to aid us in our efforts.”

The intent and purpose of the I.I.D. Program is to protect the public by requiring certain drivers who have committed alcohol-related driving offenses to have a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device installed in any vehicle they drive. The Program allows those individuals to drive legally while preventing them from driving after drinking alcohol.

There are currently 1,185 driver participants in the Ignition Interlock Device Program, whose driving activity is monitored by SCDPPPS. It is estimated that the new “All Offender Law” will significantly increase the number of drivers in the program. In 2022 alone Interlock Devices prevented over 2,800 engine starts with a BAC of .08 or higher.

Watch a clip explaining the use of an ignition interlock device:

April 2024

Scammed From Behind Bars

Allison Avinger, Director of Professional Responsibility, interviewed by Diane Lee of WSPA.

Allison Avinger, Director of Professional Responsibility, was interviewed by Diane Lee of WSPA on how to avoid early prison release scams. Special thanks to Agent William Sumter and Chris Catoe for demonstrating use of a GPS monitor. You can watch the video at this link