Across the country, judges are requiring DUI defendants to wear alcohol monitoring devices such as the SCRAM CAM bracelet to monitor alcohol consumption while they are out on bail awaiting trial. Dekalb County Judge Philip Montgomery issued an order requiring 25-year-old John A. Yanni III to wear an alcohol monitoring bracelet after his alleged involvement in a fatal DUI crash that killed an 18-year-old driver of another vehicle. Yanni was released on $10,000 bond despite the prosecutor’s argument to keep a $1 Million bond on the case. Yanni is a firefighter and paramedic whose attorney argued diligently for the lower bail. With the help of a courtroom full of his supporters, the judge agreed to lower the bond with the additional requirement that Yanni not consume any alcohol and wear an alcohol monitoring device. He is due in court on March 10 for a preliminary hearing and is currently removed from active duty with his employer, Paramedic Safety Services Inc.
Alcohol monitoring devices such as the SCRAM device have allowed judges and prosecutors to balance a defendant’s presumption of innocence and right to be released on bail with the potential danger to the community. A SCRAM bracelet requires complete sobriety. Any consumption of alcohol is immediately reported and can be handled by the appropriate authorities swiftly. This has significantly reduced the number of repeat drunk drivers in jurisdictions across the nation.