Banner-Evaluation of Minnesota's High-BAC Law

3. Evaluation of Minnesota's High-BAC Law

Profile and Disposition of DWI Cases 1997-2000

Case Dispositions

First-Time Offenders with “Borderline” High-BACs

To determine if first-time offenders with “borderline” high-BACs were less likely than other high-BAC offenders to receive enhanced sanctions, case dispositions for offenders with “borderline” BACs of .20-.22 were compared to case dispositions for offenders with BACs > .23 (Table 6). In 1998, 81.2 percent of first-time offenders with BACs .20-.22 received enhanced high-BAC sanctions, compared to 91.3 percent of offenders with BAC > .23. The sanctions included both enhanced administrative and enhanced court dispositions (including enhanced turnaround) for 60.1 percent of offenders with BACs .20-.22 and 72.0 percent of offenders with BACs > .23. In 1999, the difference in severity of case dispositions widened considerably between these two groups of offenders: 71.1 percent of offenders with BACs .20-.22 received enhanced sanctions, compared to 87.2 percent of offenders with BACs > .23. The sanctions included both enhanced administrative and enhanced court dispositions (including enhanced turnaround) for 44.2 percent of offenders with BACs .20-.22, compared to 65.4 percent of offenders with BACs > .23. The patterns of case dispositions for the two groups of high-BAC offenders in 2000 (not shown) were not markedly different from those in 1999.

Table 6

Case Dispositions for First-time DWI Offenders
BAC .20-.22 vs. BAC > .23
Minnesota, 1998 and 1999

 

1998

1999

 

BAC

.20-.22

BAC

>. 23

BAC

.20-.22

BAC

> .23

Total Cases (N)

2,351

1,705

2,443

1,766

 

%

%

%

%

Refusal or Standard Administrative Only

0.7

0.4

0.7

0.3

Enhanced Administrative Only

7.7

8.0

8.6

8.5

Standard DWI Conviction Only

11.3

5.1

15.4

6.5

Enhanced DWI Conviction Only

2.3

3.5

2.3

3.7

Standard Turnaround (Administrative & Conviction)

6.5

2.7

13.5

5.5

Enhanced Turnaround (Administrative & Conviction)

39.1

44.6

24.6

37.8

Standard Administrative & Standard Conviction

0.3

0.5

0.3

0.5

Standard Administrative & Enhanced Conviction

0.3

0.4

0.4

0.3

Enhanced Administrative & Standard Conviction

10.8

7.4

14.7

9.3

Enhanced Administrative & Enhanced Conviction

21.0

27.4

19.6

27.6

Total Standard Sanctions

18.8

8.7

29.9

12.8

Total Enhanced Sanctions

81.2

91.3

71.1

87.2