Abstract for: A System Dynamics Perspective of the New York State's Aggravated DWI Law

This paper examines the implications of an Aggravated DWI law passed in November 2006 in New York State. To examine the system-wide implications of the Aggravated DWI Law, a system dynamics computer simulation model was developed to capture the flow of drunk drivers through the criminal justice system in New York State. This system captures people from the time of arrest, through adjudication and sanctions, and then tracks these people for 10 years to capture recidivism. The goal of this project was to provide insight about the implications of the Aggravated DWI law on other parts of the system. For example, how would the law influence the police, DAs, courts, the drinking driver program (DDP), probation, and alcoholism treatment providers, and would drunk driving be reduced? The Aggravated DWI law allows for a felony DWI charge for any individual arrested for drunk driving with a BAC at or above 0.18%, regardless of previous alcohol convictions. In addition, the sanctions for an Aggravated DWI conviction are severe and require mandatory ignition interlock, license revocation and screening for alcoholism.