Surpassing Ignition Interlock Proves Costly for Washington Man

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Ignition interlocks have been all the rage in proposed DUI laws in large part to the ability of these devices to prevent DUI offenders from even starting a vehicle without first passing a breath test and demonstrating their sobriety.

With that in mind, having someone else take the breathalyzer test may be a shortcut to surpass ignition interlocks, but it's not highly recommended, as the recent sentencing of a Washington State man who did so reveals.

Former Thurston County corrections officer Michael Bowe was sentenced to a year in a jail after he was found to be in physical control of a vehicle while under the influence during a September 26, 2006 incident in which the 54-year-old man had his young grandson blow into the ignition interlock device to start his car.

Not only did an intoxicated Bowe have a child blow into the device to turn over the vehicle but he also drove around with his three-year-old and five-year-old grandsons in the vehicle. Bowe was later found passed out in the vehicle on a private a road with his grandchildren still in the car.

Bowe was originally sentenced to 120 days for reckless endangerment and being in physical control of a vehicle while under the influence. He was then hit with an additional 260 days in jail after a judge revoked his suspended sentence from a 2004 conviction for DUI.

Bowe, who will certainly not get any votes for "Grandfather of the Year," has had his run-ins with drunk driving in the past. In fact, Bowe was one of several law enforcement officers recently featured in a Seattle Post-Intelligencer investigative series depicting how officers


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