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What happens if you cheat an ignition interlock device?

On Behalf of | Dec 8, 2022 | Dui Defense

Drivers with DUI convictions must install ignition interlock devices in their vehicles. This is an attempt at keeping offenders from becoming repeat offenders.

Unfortunately, many people over the years have attempted to “cheat the system,” working around the ignition interlock device. However, there are additional criminal charges, penalties and fines associated with these actions.

A history of cheating ignition locks

Lowcost Interlock discusses the different methods people use in an attempt to get around an ignition interlock device. The first step is understanding how these devices work. They measure the driver’s breath to detect the presence of alcohol, and the car will not start if it detects a blood alcohol level of around 0.03 percent or higher.

The lights will flash and an alarm will sound if a driver attempts to start the car without taking the test, or if they fail it. This alerts not only the driver but surrounding pedestrians and passengers to the fact that it is dangerous for the driver to be behind the wheel.

Of course, over the years, people have come up with numerous creative ways to attempt to get around this. This ranges from getting passengers to blow into the device to start the car, to disabling the device itself.

Penalties for tampering

However, tampering with the device can lead to charges of a Class I misdemeanor. Anyone who helps a person tamper with the device will end up facing the same charge.

Class I misdemeanor charges can result in a fine of up to $5,000, as well as up to 18 months in jail. It may also result in a revocation of driving privileges, thus showing that tampering is not worth the cost.