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Investigations into the train accident near Los Angeles, which left more than 50 people injured, are now beginning to focus on the DUI history of the truck driver involved in the accident. He has several DUI convictions on his record.

The man, José Alejandro Sanchez-Ramirez apparently drove his truck onto the tracks, believing that it was the roadway, and later abandoned it. The train crashed into the pickup truck, and several of the cars derailed. More than 50 people were injured, and one of the engineers who sustained injuries in the accident, has since died.

Police found Sanchez-Ramirez more than a mile from the accident scene, walking and in distress. Prosecutors are waiting to file charges against him, and reports indicate that he has several previous DUI violations on his record. Tests have been conducted on him, but results are pending. It is not yet known whether drug or alcohol use were a factor in the crash.

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Under the proposal by New York Democrat Congresswoman Nita M. Lowey, states that fail to enact the law by the deadline of October 1, mandating all DUI offenders to have these devices installed in their vehicles, would suffer a cut in their highway transportation funding.

Motorists in four California counties-Los Angeles, Sacramento, Almeida and Tulare - are already familiar with a program like this. Under the pilot program, which was kicked off in 2010, even an offender who is convicted of a first-time DUI, is required to install certified ignition interlock devices in each vehicle that he owns or operates.

An ignition interlock device is a device that is connected to the ignition of the car. The device takes a breath sample from a person before he begins driving. It detects the alcohol content in the breath, and if it detects alcohol content above a predetermined limit, it will shut down the ignition, and the engine will not start. As the person drives, the device will continue to ask for samples to reduce the risk that the driver will consume alcohol as he is driving.

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A former San Francisco prosecutor, who admits to having shown off his badge to get special treatment by arresting officers during a DUI arrest, could lose his law license for his behavior. A California judge ruled recently that former San Francisco Deputy District Attorney Marc Guillory could lose his law license for a period of two years.

Guillory has three prior convictions for DUI. During those three arrests he was serving as San Francisco Deputy District Attorney. During his tenure as prosecutor in San Francisco, he was arrested in 2008, 2010, and then again in 2012 for driving under the influence of alcohol.

According to arresting officers, during each of those incidents, he “badged” them.  This means he showed the arresting officer his Deputy District Attorney badge in order to seek special treatment. The officers say that they interpreted his actions to mean that he specifically sought special treatment from them. Those three DUI arrests are not the only ones that Guillory has on his record. In 1999 he was also arrested and convicted for misdemeanor reckless driving for being involved in a drunk driving accident that resulted in a fatality.

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