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Interlock Ignition Device Tampering
VC 23247 Law, Sentence, & Defense

Information on the crime of tampering with an interlock ignition device is found at California vehicle code sections 23247.

IID: An interlock ignition device, or IID, is a machine that is attached to a vehicle's ignition that allows the vehicle to start only if the driver blows his or her breath into the machine and the machine thereafter records no alcohol on the driver's breath. An IID is usually ordered after a DUI conviction and is designed to test the driver's blood alcohol concentration (BAC) by measuring BAC that is registered on the driver's breath. Once the vehicle is started, the IID will occasionally require periodic tests to ensure that the driver did not start the vehicle with a zero BAC and thereafter consume alcohol.

An IID is designed to deliver BAC readings directly to the operator of the device. In turn, the operator of the device is required to turn over readings that reflect a crime has been committed to the district attorney for possible prosecution.

Tampering with an IID includes allowing another person to blow into the device, using non breath air to start the vehicle, disconnecting the device, and more.

Note: It is crime not only for the driver whose license has been suspended, but also for the person who assist a driver bypass an interlock ignition device. For example, blowing into an IID for a friend who is the person (driver) that is supposed to blow into the IID in order to start the driver's vehicle is a crime for both the driver and the friend.

VC 23247 Law

VC 23247(a) Allowing another person to use a vehicle without an IID: It is unlawful for a person to knowingly rent or lend a motor vehicle to another person known to have had his or her driving privilege restricted due to drugs and/or alcohol, unless the vehicle is equipped with a functioning, certified ignition interlock device. In addition, a person, whose driving privilege is restricted... shall notify any other person who rents, leases, or loans a motor vehicle to him or her of the driving restriction imposed (Abbrev.).

VC 23247b) Requesting assistance to bypass an IID: It is unlawful for any person whose driving privilege is restricted to request or solicit any other person to blow into an ignition interlock device or to start a motor vehicle equipped with the device for the purpose of providing the person so restricted with an operable motor vehicle (Abbrev.).

VC 23247(c) Assisting in bypassing an IID: It is unlawful to blow into an ignition interlock device or to start a motor vehicle equipped with the device for the purpose of providing an operable motor vehicle to a person whose driving privilege is restricted (Abbrev.).

VC 23247(d) Tampering with an IID: It is unlawful to remove, bypass, or tamper with, an ignition interlock device.

Also, it is unlawful to drive a motor vehicle without an interlock ignition device if such a device has been ordered to be installed (VC 23247(e)).


Jail Sentence: Violations of VC 23247 offenses are charged as a misdemeanors. If found guilty of any offense listed in VC 23247(a) through (d), the defendant could face up to 180 days in the county jail.​

Probation: A probation sentence is a period of supervision as opposed to an actual jail sentence . Probation sentences are allowed in VC 23247 cases, but they are not guaranteed. Whether or not a defendant will be granted a probation sentence after a conviction to any interlock ignition device crime depends largely on the facts of the case, the sophistication of the tampering with the device, and the defendant's criminal history, if any  (among other factors). Probation sentences can sometimes include a work release or house arrest order as an alternative to jail.

Further Suspension: Any conviction for a VC 23247 crime will lead to further License suspension (or revocation) for a period of time equal to the original suspension, except in cases where no interlock device was used after such an ordered was issued. In those cases, the driver's license suspension is for at lease a year.

In addition the possible penalties listed above, if found guilty of an interlock ignition device crime, the defendant could face any of the following punishments: fines and fees (up to $5,000), restitution (especially if the car is towed and the IID must be removed), high insurance rates and more.

Common defenses to an interlock ignition device charge include: Mistake of fact (as to whether an IID was required), insufficient evidence that the device was tampered with by the defendant (as opposed to a product malfunction or a tampering of the device with by another person), statue of limitations, and more. 

If you have been arrested or charged with any interlock ignition device crime, including VC 23247(d) tampering with an interlock ignition device, contact out criminal defense & DUI lawyers today for a free consultation. Our attorneys are available seven days a week to assist you. Call today!


Quick Legal Reference​

Crime: Interlock Ignition Device Tampering

Code: VC 23247

Wobbler: No. VC 23247 is not a wobbler. This means that VC 23247 is only charged as a misdemeanor.​


Incarceration: ​VC 23247 jail sentence up to 180 days.

Probation: Probation may be available in VC 23247 cases (assuming that other crimes or enhancements that might bar a probation sentence are not present). Whether or not a probation sentence is offered by the District Attorney, or granted by the court, depends on several factors, including the defendant's criminal history and the facts of the case.​

Work Release or House Arrest: In some cases, a probation sentence can include actual in-custody county jail, house arrest (electronic monitoring), or work release (or some combination of these penalties); however, most in-custody jail sentence orders that are required as a terms of probation are much shorter than the maximum jail sentence.

Strike: VC 23247 is not a strike offense listed in California's Three Strikes law.

Credits: 50% good conduct credits available.

CIMT: VC 23247  is not a crime involving moral turpitude.


Bail: $5,000 (San Bernardino County)

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