A recent story reported that Arizona Charter Schools Director Charles Tack resigned after being arrested for drunk driving. The case is still pending, but it points out another instance of how the DUI laws in Arizona (along with those of most other states) continue to get tougher on drunk driving and drugged driving.
The police in the case say that back in May, Mr. Tack was driving west on the Loop 202 near Interstate 10, when his vehicle veered into the eastbound lanes. The car then hit a guardrail and sideswiped another car which was traveling in the opposite direction. They also say that his blood alcohol content was 0.156. That’s almost twice the legal limit, and also makes the charge extreme DUI under A.R.S. 12-1392A1, which carries, along with other penalties, a mandatory 30-day jail term.
Aggravated (Felony) DUI
Prior to 2018, the wrong-way driving issue wouldn’t necessarily have been a major problem, at least as far as the DUI itself was concerned. But last year the law was changed, and at the present time, A.R.S. 28-1383A5 states that driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs while traveling the wrong way on a highway constitutes aggravated DUI, a felony!
Originally, Mr. Tack was charged in a complaint with 2 counts of aggravated DUI. Last month the former Charter Schools Director was indicted by a grand jury for violation of the same statute. Note that the grand jury indictment also contains 2 counts of aggravated DUI. The reason for indicting him on two counts is because there are two ways to be convicted of DUI: first, driving with a BAC of 0.08 or higher; and second, driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. If for some reason the 0.08 reading was thrown out by the court, the prosecutor could still present evidence of intoxication in the form of testimony that the defendant smelled of alcohol, failed standard field sobriety tests, and similar testimony.
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Phoenix, AZ 85004