FEDERAL HEIGHTS, Colo. (CBS4) – A man convicted of his 12th DUI will spend six years behind bars.
Eliazar Morales was sentenced using new tougher guidelines passed by state lawmakers last year.
It was late October when Morales drove the stretch of Federal Boulevard and nearly caused a disaster.
Officers saw Morales make an erratic U-turn at 63rd Avenue as other vehicles slammed on their brakes to avoid being hit. He was pulled over and arrested. His blood alcohol content was more than double the legal limit.
Morales had been there before. He had been arrested eight other times for DUIs in Colorado and even more out-of-state and never served an extended prison sentence.
But this time, using a new state law, Morales got the maximum sentence — six years in prison and another three on parole. A year ago Morales may have ended up back on the streets.
In a statement, Adams County District Attorney Dave Young said Morales is “a classic example of why we need the felony DUI charge in Colorado … this defendant has demonstrated over and over that he will not stop driving while intoxicated.”
The Colorado District Attorney Council says the state still needs tougher laws against repeat DUI offenders.
A Republican bill to strengthen those laws is expected to be introduced this year.