AG Won't Appeal Drunken Driving Ruling; Turns to Legislature

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - Attorney General Troy King has decided not to appeal a court decision that a fourth DUI conviction rises to a felony only if it occurred in a five-year period. Instead, he will ask the Legislature to toughen the drunken driving law.

King had argued that a fourth conviction is a felony no matter how long the time period when the drunken driving convictions occurred.

But the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals disagreed in a decision Friday. The appeals court said the Legislature put in the five-year time frame when it amended the law last year.

A spokesman for King says it would be difficult to argue with the court's reasoning on the issue.

And that's why King will be working with legislators to try to amend the law to make it clear that all convictions count, not just those in the last five years.

The first three convictions for DUI are misdemeanors punishable by up to a year in jail. A fourth conviction becomes a felony punishable by one to ten years in prison.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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