Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

DWI Convictions Can Get Lost in State System.

Byline: Daniel J. Chacon Journal Northern Bureau

MVD Record May Not Show Recent Cases

Lisa Kennicott thought it was bad enough when a car driven by an alleged drunken-driver collided with her Subaru from behind while she waited at a stoplight in July.

Kennicott grew increasingly frustrated when she learned that Municipal Court in Santa Fe didn't have any record of the alleged drunken driver being convicted of DWI in a separate incident only a month after the July accident.

The prior conviction slipped through the cracks. If convicted in Kennicott's accident, the previous conviction could contribute to a stiffer sentence for the other driver.

In this case, city prosecutor Art Michael said, the crack was created by the fact that Municipal Court requests an alleged offender's driving history from the state Motor Vehicle Division only once, at the beginning of the case. …

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