Jul

30

Mom Charged With Drunk Driving After Running Over Her Toddler

By Mike

By

A 40-year-old Illinois woman who allegedly drove over and killed her young daughter was arrested last week and is being held in the Will County Adult Detention Facility, according to a report from the Chicago Tribune.

The woman, Yvette Y. Guerrero-Silva, is facing two separate counts of aggravated DUI, with one count amounting to a Class 2 felony, and the other count qualifying as just a Class 4 felony.

Guerrero-Silva will probably spend her weeks before trial behind bars, as a local judge reportedly set her bond at a lofty $1 million.

The story of her DUI is as tragic as it is unbelievable. According to sources, the mother was backing out of the driveway of a family business in the early evening when her car rolled over her 19-month-daughter, Holly.

The force of the car caused massive head injuries to the toddler, who was pronounced dead just a few hours later at a Cook County hospital near Chicago. The official autopsy said the girl died of numerous injuries, and her death was considered an accident.

At the scene, after the accident, Guerrero-Silva reportedly admitted to law enforcement officials that she had consumed several drinks containing alcohol before getting into her car.

Sources say that a blood test administered at the hospital after the accident showed that her blood alcohol levels were well above the legal limit in Illinois, which is 0.08 percent.

Obviously, the mother was devastated by the results of her actions, but the trial court may not factor her personal loss into the sentencing equation.

The charges she is currently facing could bring several years in prison, and sources say that prosecutors will likely bring several more charges against her after the results of her toxicology tests are officially announced.

If she is convicted of the Class 2 felony charge, she could spend up to seven years in prison. If she is also convicted of the lesser felony charge, this sentence could reach a full decade.

In DUI cases that do not involve a loss of life or an injury, typical punishments include a fine, the suspension of a license, or some time in jail.

But when DUI accidents involve serious injuries or fatalities, even if there was no intention to hurt another person, prison sentences can become very lengthy, and some drivers may even have their licenses permanently revoked.

Only time will tell whether Guerrero-Silva will face such a harsh punishment.

Jul

25

Surrendering to Social Media: Is It Addiction?

By Topher

When we think of addiction, we often think of chain smokers, alcoholics, and hardcore drug addicts. And for good reason – those addictions often bring ill effects on society, such as second hard smoke, drunk driving, and gang violence. But any habit can turn into addiction, including using popular social media sites like Twitter and Facebook.

How do you know if you’re addicted?


Social Media Addiction

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Social Media Addiction

You see how many Facebook friends post pictures and update their statuses on a regular basis, but just how drawn into social media are we these days?

  • It’s been predicted that Facebook will reach 1 billion users by August 2012.
  • In September 2011, it was reported that 100 million people actively used Twitter.

If so many people are on social media sites, how excessively are they using them?

Is it Addiction?

In a national survey of 1,000 teens, 50% said they visited social a networking site every day.

  • Many admit to being addicted, but they also see social media as a positive.
    • 50% said social media had helped their friendships.
    • 30% said social networks made them feel outgoing.

Research from the University of Maryland showed 4 out of 5 students experienced negative side effects when disconnecting from technology for a day.

  • Most students couldn’t make it without media for 24 hours.
  • Some of them felt:
    • Depressed
    • Confused
    • Insecure
    • Panicked
    • Lonely
    • Dependent
  • Many admitted to being addicted to mobile phones and social networking.

Other recent research reveals it may be harder to refrain from tweeting than it is to refrain from:

  • Smoking
  • Consuming Alcohol

This might be because of the associated costs of using each:

  • Social media costs you your time.
  • Cigarettes and alcohol have long-term health and monetary costs.

Are You Addicted?

It’s not hard to get sucked into the social media frenzy.

In fact, social networking sites are designed to keep drawing you back in. They do this through:

  • Status Updates
  • Comments
  • Email Notifications
  • And any other way you can reach out to the site or have the site reach out to you.

The Bergen Facebook Addiction Scale has been used to determine if people are addicted to this extremely popular social networking site.

It’s based on how people rank the following statements: very rarely, rarely, sometimes, often, very often.

  • You use Facebook so much that it has a negative impact on your studies or job.
  • You become troubled or restless if you can’t use Facebook.
  • You’ve tried to reduce the time spent on the site, but it didn’t work.
  • You go on Facebook to forget about your personal problems.
  • You spend a lot of time using or planning to use Facebook.
  • You want to use Facebook more and more.
  • If you chose “often” or “always” for at least 4 of these statements, you might be addicted to Facebook (at least according to this study).

    Conclusion: Is Social Media Addictive?

    Whether people are “addicted” or not, social media is becoming a huge part of our society, both in terms of our personal lives and business lives.

    How much time does social media take up of your day?

    Provided by Total DUI.

Jul

25

Man Gets 25 Years in Prison After Killing Wife in DUI Accident

By Mike

By

A Florida resident received a prison sentence of 25 years this week after accidentally killing his wife during a drunken car accident in 2010, according to a sobering report from the Tampa Bay Times.

Sources say 60-year-old Charles Peoples killed his wife in a drunk driving accident that occurred early one evening two years ago when Peoples veered into the path of an oncoming car on Interstate 75.

At the time of his DUI arrest, Peoples had a blood alcohol level of 0.204, which is well above the legal Florida limit of 0.08. In addition to his drunkenness, Peoples was also on probation and driving with a revoked license.

Sources say that Peoples made matters worse after the accident when he cut his wife’s seat belt and allegedly moved her behind the steering wheel, in an effort to keep police from learning that he was driving unlawfully.

At his sentencing, Peoples said he was the victim, and that he felt “railroaded” by the court. He also claimed that he never tried to move his wife behind the steering wheel after the accident and that he “never made her do anything she didn’t want to do.”

Peoples also told the court he had been a good husband and father. Sources say Wanda Peoples stayed with her husband for 42 years and they had four children together. But Charles Peoples struggled with addictions to alcohol and heroin during most of their marriage.

The judge, however, had little sympathy for Peoples, especially given his multiple arrests over the past 40 years. According to Circuit Judge Gregory Holder, the “only appropriate punishment” for Peoples was the “maximum allowed by law.”

After finding Peoples guilty on charges of DUI manslaughter, driving on a revoked sentence, and violating probation, Judge Holder gave Peoples 25 years in prison, the maximum amount he was able to level against the wayward driver.

Sources speculated that Peoples may have regretted dismissing his attorney and choosing to represent himself. Peoples’ self-representation led to some awkward moments, as he initially pleaded not guilty, but switched to a guilty plea to avoid trial.

When Peoples changed his mind for a third time and tried to withdraw his guilty plea, Judge Holder refused to let him do so.

When Peoples requested a delay in sentencing so a doctor could testify that he suffered from a chronic illness, Judge Holder refused to allow the testimony, and instead read the doctor’s written report.

Jul

24

Alcohol: A Recession-Proof Industry?

By Topher

When tough times hit, lots of people look for comfort in a bottle. This can often times lead to a DUI arrest or drunk driving accident.

In an economic recession, purveyors of booze may be in a unique position to thrive. You might know the best bars in town, but what do you know about the alcohol industry as a whole?


Alcohol: A Recession-Proof Industry

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Consumption and Sales

In 2010, about 67% of American adults drank alcohol.

In general, women prefer wine.

  • 48% of women prefer wine to beer or liquor.

In general, men prefer beer.

  • 54% of men prefer beer to wine or liquor.

However, in 2011, beer sales were down about 1.3% by volume.

  • Though, imported beer sales were up by 1%.

In 2009, alcohol sales reached $167,000,000,000.

  • $75,400,000,000 was on packaged beverages.
  • $91,600,000,000 was on drinks purchased and consumed away from home.

Overall sales percent increase for both stores and wholesalers for wine, beer, and liquor:

2007 2008 2009 2010
Stores 5.96% 2.00% 1.63% 5.47%
Wholesalers 7.22% 5.87% 4.78% 6.24%

From July 2010 to July 2011:

  • Stores = 6.08% increase
  • Wholesalers = 6.44% increase

Now that you have a better idea of the purchasing side of alcohol, and you’ve seen the growth wholesalers have experienced, what happens before alcohol gets to your local store or bar?

Production and Wholesale

In March 2012:

  • 18,182,366 gallons of wine were produced.
  • 17,165,152 barrels of beer were produced.
  • 993,101,022 proof gallons of distilled spirits were produced.
    • Brandy = 275,078
    • Rum, Gin, Vodka = 889,224
    • Whisky = 9,456,363
    • Alcohol (miscellaneous) = 982,480,357

Inc., a top business magazine, predicted that beer, wine, and liquor wholesale would be one of the best industries for starting a business in 2012.

Why?

  • The sale of alcohol at lower price points has risen recently.
  • Liquor, wine, and beer wholesalers’ profits have gone up by about 18%.

Conclusion

While the alcohol industry isn’t completely recession proof, Forbes has said it appears to be recession-resistant. 2011 was a big year of growth in several aspects of the industry, and this trend may only continue.

Remember, if you’re going to drink, don’t drink and drive. Not only could it lead to serious injury or death (of yourself or others), but it can also result in felony DUI or misdemeanor charges. – Bought to you by Total DUI.

Jul

23

Former Wife of New York Governor Cuomo Arrested for Drunk Driving

By Mike

By

Kerry Kennedy, the former wife of current New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, and a renowned human rights activist, was arrested this week for driving while impaired by drugs, according to a report from MSNBC.com.

Sources say Kennedy’s car collided with a tractor-trailer on a New York freeway early Friday morning, and she was arrested by police shortly after the scary collision.

However, a spokesman for Kennedy denied that tests showed she was impaired. According to Ken Sunshine, a man with a perfect name for public relations, all of Kennedy’s tests showed “no drugs or alcohol whatsoever in her system.”

Sources say that Kennedy took a broad range of tests, including a breathalyzer test, as well as blood and urine tests, when she was taken to a police station in North Castle, New York.

The police report claims that Kennedy was indeed impaired by drugs after the accident, and 911 calls from that morning describe Kennedy’s car as moving “erratically” before it struck the truck.

After the accident, which gave Kennedy’s car a flat tire, the 52-year-old activist was discovered by police simply sitting behind the wheel of her injured car. Fortunately, Kennedy herself was not injured in the accident, according to sources.

Speculation from Forbes reporters suggests that she actually fell asleep while she was driving. Sources say this may have been a side effect of Ambien, her alleged sleep medication, which, on rare occasions, may cause users to leave bed and drive while still asleep.

Under this extraordinary scenario, Ambien users may engage in “sleep driving” and have absolutely no memory of their trip. Of course, this is only speculation, and has not yet been proven.

Still, if it was the case that Kennedy was driving while sleeping, it could pose interesting legal questions. Could Kennedy be held responsible for the accident if she was, in fact, sleeping? And how could she prove that she was “sleep driving,” and not driving erratically while awake?

The case may prove very difficult for prosecutors, especially given Kennedy’s fame in the New York region. Kerry Kennedy is one of Robert F. Kennedy’s eleven children and is the president of the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights.

The Kennedy Center is located in Washington D.C., and is renowned for its efforts to preserve human rights across the world.

Of course, Kennedy has more pressing, local matters to deal with first. Sources say she is due to appear this week in court for her first DWI hearing.

Jul

20

Drunk Driver Arrested After Sleeping in Car Outside Police Station

By Mike

By

A man who was found sleeping drunk in his car next to a police station led police on a dangerous high speed chase around West Palm Beach, Florida, according to an alarming report from Florida’s WPTV News.

The man, 20-year-old Michael Fleurizard, had allegedly passed out behind the wheel of his car at roughly 3:30 in the morning. The driver, however, picked a poor location to nod off in his vehicle, as the Jupiter, Florida, police station was just a few yards away.

When officers approached the sleeping driver to try to wake him up, Fleurizard initially resisted their efforts to arrest him for a non-driving DUI, and sped away in his car.

When the drive veered out of the parking, he struck one of the officers and dragged the other several feet until the officer dislodged himself from the car.

According to Scott Pascarella, a spokesman for the Jupiter Police Department, local police then engaged in a high speed pursuit of the driver, who had turned a potential misdemeanor into a guaranteed felony with one very poor decision.

Midway through the pursuit, however, police realized that Fleurizard was a hazard to other drivers because he was driving so recklessly, so the police ended their chase and waited for the drunk driver to make a mistake. This happened pretty quickly.

Shortly after the Jupiter police ended their pursuit, they received a call from West Palm Beach police, who informed that that their suspect had crashed his car into a guardrail in their town.

Police from West and North Palm Beach were eventually able to handcuff Fleurizard, and they sent him to a local hospital to be treated for minor injuries sustained in the one-car crash.

Hours later, the subject of the adrenaline-inducing DUI arrest was booked into Palm Beach County Jail. He faces charges of aggravated battery on a police officer, aggravated fleeing to elude and possession of both cocaine and marijuana.

Fortunately, both of the Jupiter police officers who were struck by the fleeing car only suffered minor injuries. One officer did not require any medical treatment while the other received treatment at the Jupiter Medical Center, according to sources.

In some DUI cases, drivers are foolish enough to fall asleep in their cars. In other cases, drivers in the wrong frame of mind will try to elude police. But it’s rare to see one driver make both of these huge mistakes at the same time.

Jul

18

Woman With Multiple DUI Convictions Causes Serious Accident

By Mike

By

A woman from St. Augustine, Florida, may be facing a sixth DUI charge after she crashed her car into a concrete wall, according to a recent report from the St. Augustine Record.

Sources say that Theresa Long, 53, has been arrested on five previous occasions for driving under the influence. And she has reportedly been to DUI schools four different times, which are designed to drive home the dangers of alcohol.

The latest incident occurred at 10:45 p.m. on the Fourth of July, a date that sees a remarkable jump in the number of DUI arrests made by police across the country every year.

Long allegedly steered her car through a number of obstacles before landing in a St. Augustine parking lot.

According to witnesses interviewed by the St. Augustine Police Department, Long was driving her Honda Fit north on a local street when she made an unsuccessful attempt at turning left because she was driving too fast to handle the turn.

After she spun out of the turn, she struck a curb, and then hit a concrete barrier outside a hotel, which caused her car to flip three times, according to witness.

Shortly after flipping three times, the Honda Fit finally came to rest in the parking lot of a nearby tavern.

When police officers arrived on the scene, they promptly took the injured women to a local hospital to be treated for her injuries, and they also administered a test to gauge her blood alcohol level at the time of the crash.

Results from this test are pending, but police reportedly detected an “odor of alcohol on her breath”.

Of course, it is possible that Long’s blood alcohol content was below the legal limit, so prosecutors will have some work ahead of them if they wish to file charges and convict Long of her sixth DUI.

Sources say that it will take about a month for these results to be processed, so Long will have to wait some time before she learns her legal fate. In the meantime, she can begin preparing her defense for the careless driving charge that was leveled against her on the night of the accident.

Jul

16

Los Angeles Police Make 500 DUI Arrests Over July Fourth Weekend

By Mike

By

Los Angeles police made more than 500 DUI arrests over the Fourth of July Weekend, thanks in part to an aggressive holiday monitoring campaign, according to a recent report from the Beverly Hills Courier.

Similar numbers appeared in other major U.S. cities, as police departments across the country typically send out hordes of officers to patrol the streets for drunk drivers during major holidays.

According to Wendy Brewer, a leader of the Avoid the 100 DUI Campaign, “[m]ost Americans may not realize it, but the Fourth of July is one of the deadliest holidays of the year due to alcohol-impaired driving crashes.”

She also observed that, while most celebrations begin during the day, they usually drag on until late at night, when the “dangers from impaired drivers are even higher.”

Southern California’s Avoid the 100 DUI Campaign, which began the last week of June, represents a joint effort between several law enforcement agencies to increase the presence of DUI checkpoints.

Indeed, over the latest holiday weekend, Los Angeles police specifically tasked with checking drivers’ sobriety were “out in full force,” according to Brewer.

While increasing police DUI patrols over holiday weekends may seem like a no-brainer for municipal police departments, the idea is easier to implement in theory than in practice.

To start, many police departments across the country have seen their staffing levels gutted by the decrease in tax revenues caused by the recent recession.

So many police departments have to take precious resources away from other crime priorities in order to staff DUI checkpoints, which can be very time intensive.

In addition, large cities often have a number of different police agencies that all must coordinate in order to maximize the effectiveness of initiatives aimed at reducing the amount of drunk driving accidents.

In Los Angeles, for example, city police must compare notes with a wide range of county authorities, as well as the state-run California Highway Patrol.

But as public awareness of the dangers of drunk driving has increased during the last few decades, police departments have found it easier to funnel more resources into DUI enforcement, especially over major holidays.

So revelers who like to drink during the holidays should remember that they may be at the highest risk for a DUI arrest when everyone else is partying, too.

DUI arrests could lead to heavy fines, suspended licenses, or even some jail time, so driving while drunk over the holidays just isn’t worth the risk.

Jul

13

Bay Area Police Reconsider Controversial DUI Arrest Procedure

By Mike

By

A traffic court judge near San Francisco ruled last week that Pinellas County police officers cannot perform a key DUI test off camera, according to a recent report from Bay News 9.

During DUI stops, police officers in Pinellas County keep onboard cameras rolling during the entire arrest process, with one key exception.

Sources say that the officers do not film an important roadside test called the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus, which is also known as HGN and is considered the most important roadside test to determine a driver’s sobriety.

During this test, officers look at a driver’s eyes to determine whether he or she is drunk. If the drivers are inebriated, their eyes will jerk from side to side during the test. But this test is the only part of a DUI arrest that isn’t filmed.

Last week, a judge ruled that this practice was unlawful after hearing a complaint from Christopher Hastings, who was arrested for a DUI last year and challenged the legality of the arresting officer’s decision to make him perform the HGN test off camera.

At trial, the state prosecutor asked the arresting officer why he chose to perform the test off camera, and the officer claimed he was just abiding by the police department’s policy. This statement proved true, as the police department does ask officers to keep the HGN tests off video.

This practice, however, was attacked by the defendant’s DUI attorney, who claimed that the policy was intentionally implemented to exclude evidence from trial. The DUI attorney also claimed that the policy was “crazy and archaic.”

The judge sympathized with this perspective, and ruled that it is unfair for the police department to exclude proof of the HGN test from trial but still go to court and testify about the results of the test.

As a result, the prosecutor cannot use the results of the HGN test to convict Hastings. Of course, Hastings allegedly had a blood alcohol content of 0.16 at the time of his arrest, so he still faces a tough battle in court.

But Hastings and his attorney may have stumbled into a watershed moment for DUI laws in California, despite skepticism from some law enforcement officials.

Some observers claim that filming the HGN test will not show a person’s eyeballs moving back and forth, but supporters of the new rule claim that the video can show if police violate procedures during the test. This, perhaps, would be the most important benefit of filming the HGN process.

Jul

11

Oakland Raiders Wide Receiver Plans to Fight DUI Charges at Trial

By Mike

By

Oakland Raiders wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey plans to fight his recent DUI charge at trial, according to a recent San Jose Mercury News report on the NFL player’s legal troubles.

This offseason has been full of drunk driving arrests by NFL players, and the league and its teams have started to take notice. Both the NFL and several teams have threatened to increase penalties for such legal troubles, but they must first wait for the legal system to sort out the players’ alleged crimes.

In this case, it appears that Heyward-Bey is planning to fight his charges, which include one count of driving under the influence of alcohol.

Sources say that the wide receiver told a San Francisco judge last week that he was planning to plead not guilty to the charge, and that he intended to have his guilt determined by a jury trial. That trial is slated to begin on July 23.

The majority of DUI cases in most states are usually handled through plea bargaining, which saves the defendant and the state time and money, but many people who are arrested for drunk driving opt to fight the charges during a trial.

According to sources, Heyward-Bey’s DUI attorney believes that there may have been some procedural errors during the wide receiver’s arrest that invalidated the charges.

In his attorney’s words, “[a]fter investigating all the procedures and all the chain of events, it appears not everything was done according to the rule of law, and there may be some questions that need to go before a jury.”

Common procedural errors that may occur during a DUI arrest include a failure to read the arrestee his or her Miranda rights, improper use of breathalyzers or other equipment used to detect blood alcohol levels, and other police mistakes.

If one of these mistakes occurred during Heyward-Bey’s arrest, it’s entirely possible that his DUI arrest could be deemed unlawful, and he would escape punishment for his alleged drunk driving incident.

Still, the 25-year-old wide receiver has a tough task ahead of him, as sources say that his blood alcohol content at the time of his arrest was 0.12, which is well above the legal limit of .08.

In the meantime, the Oakland Raiders are withholding judgment on their player’s actions until they know the outcome of his trial.

According to his coach, Dennis Allen, the team is “monitoring” the situation and will wait and see “how the whole legal proceedings carry out.”

Jul

9

Man With 5 DUI Arrests Defies Odds by Avoiding Prison Sentence

By Mike

By

In a frustrating end to a long saga for Sioux Falls prosecutors, a man who has been convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol five different times in the past five years has been released from jail without having to serve any time in prison.

The man, 57-year-old Randall Gene Hoogendoorn, received a sentence this week that only requires him to spend two years under “intense supervision,” according to a report from The Argus Leader, a South Dakota newspaper.

Sources indicate that prosecutors asked for a lengthy sentence due to Hoogendoorn’s criminal history, but Judge Robin Houwman felt that a lesser sentence offered the man “the best opportunity for rehabilitation.”

But despite the seemingly lenient sentence, Judge Houwman established strict guidelines that Hoogdendoorn must obey.

For example, the man will have to call his probation officers up to 50 times a day in order to meet the terms of his probation. If he fails to regularly report to his probation officer, Hoogdendoorn could face a term in prison of up to 10 years.

The judge apparently believed that heavily supervised probation would best serve the public interest, which is a decision many judges often make, as it keeps another person out of prison and saves taxpayer dollars.

Nevertheless, prosecutors were very surprised that the man left court with such a light sentence. Sources say that his latest arrest occurred when his blood alcohol content was 0.24 percent, which is three times the legal limit.

The latest arrest, though, was the first felony DUI conviction for Hoogendoorn. His previous DUI arrests were all misdemeanors, according to sources.

A recent change to DUI laws in South Dakota established that a person’s third DUI offense is automatically a felony, but this provision was enacted too late to play a role in Hoogendoorn’s previous trials.

So, instead of sending Hoogendoorn to prison for 10 years, state prosecutors had to settle for a 180-day stint in jail and a two-year probationary sentence.

Sources say that Hoogendoorn will also be placed under house arrest during the initial portion of his probation and that he will be required to call his probation officer when he wakes up, when he eats, and even when he leaves his room.

As Judge Houwman put it, the man is not “just being released out into the community.” On the contrary, it seems that Hoogendoorn will be a prisoner in his own home.

Jul

5

Proposed New Jersey DUI Law Would Greatly Stiffen DUI Penalties

By Mike

By

Several states have taken active measures to increase the severity of DUI laws in the past few years, but a proposed series of new regulations in New Jersey establish a new precedent for tough DUI enforcement, according to a report from the Newark Star-Ledger.

This week, the New Jersey Legislature will vote on a bill that would require all drivers convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol to install an ignition interlock device that would keep their cars from starting if they have been drinking.

In years past, these tools have only been used for people who have been convicted of multiple DUI offenses, but many states are now turning to ignition interlock systems for first-time DUI offenders, as well.

In New Jersey, for example, current DUI laws only require the installation of the Breathalyzer-like devices for people who have multiple DUI convictions, or for drivers who were arrested with a blood alcohol level at more than twice the legal limit.

While this law has been in place, roughly 2,500 ignition devices were installed, but if the new law is passed, this number could double in just 12 months, according to Frank Harris, a lobbyist for Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

In defense of the proposed law, Harris also said that “[r]equiring ignition interlocks for all convicted drunk drivers provides multiple benefits to society (by) teaching offenders to drive sober which helps prevent repeat offenses and in turn saves lives.”

Harris also noted that the threat of a fine or license suspension does not deter drivers from driving intoxicated again.

In response, some critics of the bill claim that ignition interlock devices aren’t worth the expense, given that they typically cost drivers several hundred dollars, which can be a significant financial burden for many drivers.

John Bowman, a spokesman for the National Motorists Association, also told reporters that these devices don’t really help to deter first-time offenders because most of these drivers learn their lesson and refrain from driving drunk again.

But despite reservations from groups like the National Motorists Association, the national trend seems to be leaning towards the installation of ignition interlock systems for every convicted drunk driver, regardless of the nature of their offense.

In the last few years, sixteen states have enacted laws requiring these systems for all drunk drivers, and Missouri will soon become the seventeenth, according to sources. So the momentum seems to be swinging in favor of the proposed New Jersey bill.

Jul

3

Another Misguided DUI Driver Makes a Failed Attempt to Bribe a Cop

By Mike

By

Just one week after one drunk driver made headlines for trying to bribe his way out of a DUI ticket, another intoxicated driver made an unsuccessful attempt to purchase a “get out of jail free” card.

Ashley Anderson, a 21-year-old resident of Orlando, Florida, was pulled over by police for driving while intoxicated at about 3:00 a.m. Thursday morning, according to a report from the Orlando Sentinel.

Anderson was initially pulled over for traveling 12 miles per hour about the speed limit. And sources say that she could have simply been charged with a misdemeanor if she had handled the arrest in a responsible fashion. Anderson, however, did not handle the arrest in a wise manner.

After police pulled her over, she refused to leave the car, forcing the officer to ask her multiple times to leave her vehicle.

When she kept refusing to leave her 2008 Nissan Altima, the arresting officer reached for her ignition, grabbed the keys, opened her door, and pulled her out by her left arm. The officer later stated in his report that he feared that Anderson would try to flee the scene.

When he pulled Anderson from the car, the state trooper reported that he smelled an “obvious odor” of alcohol on her breath, and he also claims that she stumbled on the ground when she left the car and had difficulty walking to the police cruiser.

A quick search of the Altima after the arrest revealed a nearly empty bottle of tequila in Anderson’s car. Carrying an open bottle of liquor in a car is illegal in almost every state.

But despite her arrest, and the discovery of the tequila in her car, Anderson was still only facing a misdemeanor DUI charge. That is, until she opened her mouth.

Sources say that when the trooper put Anderson in the back of his car, she made several attempts to offer him $3,000 in exchange for letting her go. According to the police report, she told the officer, “[w]hatever I owe you, I can just pay you in cash.”

In an effort to convince the officer, Anderson claimed that she had escaped a previous DUI charge by giving the officer $2,000, although there is no way to confirm this story.

Needless to say, the officer in this case declined her offer, and prosecutors will now level an extra charge against Anderson for attempting to bribe a law enforcement officer, which is a felony in Florida.

Jul

2

Drunk Driver Suspected of Causing Three Accidents in One Night

By Mike

By

A California drunk driver was arrested last week on suspicion of causing at least three different hit-and-run accidents in one night, according to a remarkable report from the San Jose Mercury News.

31-year-old Justin Mendoza was taken into custody by Napa police last weekend after his night of illegal activity finally ended when officers discovered him hiding in a creek bed, according to sources.

The night of driving peril started around 11:00 p.m. last Friday when Mendoza was cruising around Napa, California at an alarming speed, and with very little regard for the customary rules of the road.

The first two collisions occurred around 11:00 p.m., and both occurred on Silverado Trail Road. At least one of these hit-and-run accidents involved an injury, as well.

Then a third collision happened on the same road, and this accident led to one car completely flipping over. When police arrived on the scene, they saw a man sprinting away from the overturned vehicle that was involved in the crash.

Predictably, the man who was fleeing turned out to have been the culprit who allegedly caused all three accidents on the same stretch of road, but police had to do a bit of legwork before they caught Mendoza.

Sources say that the police who originally responded to the scene called for additional help, and the officers eventually set up a large perimeter around the area where Mendoza had fled.

After setting up a broad perimeter, the officers enlisted the aid of a police dog, which eventually discovered Mendoza hiding in a creek bed near a small river.

They soon learned that Mendoza was the registered owner of the overturned car, and promptly escorted him to jail after seeing that he displayed obvious signs of intoxication.

But before he was taken to jail, Mendoza, who is a resident of Yountville, California, was sent to a hospital for treatment for what sources call “minor injuries.”

After his DUI arrest, Mendoza was charged with drunk driving and also causing three different hit-and-run crashes.

The extent of Mendoza’s criminal penalties will depend on a number of factors, including his prior history, his level of inebriation at the time of the arrest, and the nature of the injuries and property damage he caused through his irresponsible driving.

In California, even minor, first-time DUI offenses can lead to heavy fines, a suspended license, or even jail time, so Mendoza likely faces a significant amount of punishment, if the tale of his epic driving adventures proves true.