Can prior out-of-state DUI convictions be used against the accused facing a new DUI charge in Kansas?

Posted by Matt McLane | Feb 22, 2019 | 0 Comments

The Kansas DUI statute, 8-1567, was amended in July 2018 to further define what the courts should consider when comparing prior out-of-state DUI convictions.  8-1567(j) was added: 

(j) For the purposes of determining whether an (out of state DUI) offense is comparable, the following shall be considered:

(1) The name of the out-of-jurisdiction offense;

(2) the elements of the out-of-jurisdiction offense; and

(3) whether the out-of-jurisdiction offense prohibits similar conduct to the conduct prohibited by the closest approximate Kansas offense.

Simply put, Kansas courts will only consider out-of-state DUI convictions if the statutory language and elements of the offense are similar in meaning to the Kansas elements.  This new provision in the statute serves to broaden the scope of review of the out of state convictions.  Prosecutors will argue the out-of-state law closely resembles the Kansas law and should therefore be used against the accused as a "prior" offense. Defense attorneys will work to highlight the differences in the particular language and elements of the offense.  There is an existing court of appeals case filed in April 2016, State vs. Stanley, that defense attorneys will use to exclude prior convictions.  The Stanley case featured a comparison of the Missouri DWI statute, 577.010, with the Kansas DUI statute, 8-1567.  The sole issue was whether a prior Missouri DWI conviction under 577.010 should be considered in the defendant's criminal history.  The Stanley court ruled that the Missouri statute was more broad than the Kansas statute because while Missouri simply uses a standard of  "under the influence of alcohol" to define the term "intoxicated," the Kansas law uses more narrow terms: " a degree that renders the person incapable of safely driving the vehicle."  That degree of intoxication makes the difference.  You can read the full text of the Stanley case here.   

Stay tuned as the "prior convictions" issue will surely be litigated further as Kansas courts weigh the new statutory language against the backdrop of the Stanley case.   

About the Author

Matt McLane

Matt McLane was born in Topeka, Kansas, and moved to Pittsburg, Kansas in 1980 where he attended middle school, high school and college. Upon graduation from PSU in 1992, Matt moved back to Topeka where he attended Washburn University law school. Upon graduation, he moved to Overland Park and worked in a small firm handling DUI and traffic cases. He opened the McLane Law Firm in April 2011 and has built his firm on a strong referral base and solid reputation.


There are no comments for this post. Be the first and Add your Comment below.

Leave a Comment

McLane Law Firm

Matt McLane has been defending individuals charged with DUI, traffic and criminal offenses since his graduation from Washburn University Law School in 1996. Licensed in the states of Kansas and Missouri. Mr. McLane specializes in DUI and criminal defense throughout the Kansas City metropolitan area.

Contact Us Today!

Mr. McLane´s clients benefit from his experience and reputation of being a respected, professional attorney with a strong work ethic who is committed to successfully resolving every client´s legal challenges in a Timely and Professional manner.

McLane Law Firm, LLC
(913) 322-4715 (fax)
Mon: 08:30am - 05:30pm
Tue: 08:30am - 05:30pm
Wed: 08:30am - 05:30pm
Thu: 08:30am - 05:30pm
Fri: 08:30am - 05:30pm