Many of my clients are surprise to learn that they are looking at jail time for a California DUI. And although it is possible to get jail time for a first-time DUI, jail is more common for second and subsequent DUI offenses. Regardless of whether it’s a first-time or subsequent DUI offense, many clients want to know if there are any alternatives to actually serving the jail time.
Home confinement may be one such alternative.
California Penal Code section 1203.016(a) states,
“Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the board of supervisors of any county may authorize the correctional administrator…to offer a program under which inmates committed to a county jail or other county correctional facility…may voluntarily participate or involuntarily be placed in a home detention program during their sentence in lieu of confinement in the county jail or other county correctional facility or program under the auspices of the probation officer.”
Home confinement is a form of “alternative sentencing,” which provides an alternative to jail for low-risk and non-violent defendants. This usually includes DUI defendants with relatively short jail sentences.
Home confinement is sometimes referred to as house arrest, home detention, or electronic monitoring. Like the name implies, it requires a defendant to serve his or her jail sentence at home while being monitored with an electronic monitoring anklet. If the defendant travels beyond the confines of their home, probation is notified and the defendant could be facing a probation violation.
Like many of my clients ask, what about work, school, doctor’s appointment, and other places that a defendant might need to attend?
When the anklet is fitted on the person, the addresses of these places are given to the company which monitors the defendant. The defendant is then allowed to go to and from those places.
Home confinement is a good alternative to jail for those who have medical issues or who run the risk of losing a job if they have to miss work. However, the cost of these programs is rather expensive. But if you can afford it and jail just isn’t an option, ask your California DUI attorney about the possibility of serving your jail time through home confinement.