There is no proper dress code for a DUI arrest, but potential drunk drivers should know that wearing nothing but underwear and socks could complicate an already difficult evening on the road.
According to a recent, tongue-in-cheek, report from the Chicago Tribune, an Illinois man wearing very little clothing (on a cold winter day, no less) was recently arrested under the suspicion of driving under the influence.
The man, whose actions certainly qualify him for consideration as the year’s silliest DUI offender, was charged with a misdemeanor DUI after he rammed his black 2009 Honda into the side of a police squad car on Chicago’s Northwest Side.
Around 11:00 a.m. last Saturday morning, a concerned citizen called police to notify them that a man was driving down a back alley in the wrong direction. The caller suggested that the driver appeared to be swerving, as well.
Police quickly responded to the call, and blocked one of the alley exits. In an effort to escape the situation, the driver casually drifted into a police car.
The occupants of the police car were further surprised when the man with the poor driving skills tumbled out of his Honda wearing only underwear and some socks. Sources do not indicate the type or color of either item of clothing.
The driver, who was identified as 24-year-old Arsenio Garcia, was charged with a misdemeanor DUI, driving the wrong way down a one-way street, illegally using an alley as a through-street, failing to reduce speed, damaging public property, and driving without a license or insurance.
Garcia will also be tried in the court of public opinion on charges of bad taste. The very bad day for Garcia ended at a hospital, where he was treated for minor scrapes to his face.
The officer who was in the squad car at the time of the collision was also sent to a hospital, where he was treated and released for minor injuries.
This incident offers a few good lessons for future drivers. First, and most importantly, if you have a few drinks in your system and feel a bit wobbly, chances are that you are not in the best condition to drive.
Taking a taxi, calling a friend, or using public transportation are all much better alternatives to spending the night in jail and facing potentially thousands of dollars in fines and a loss of a driver’s license.
In addition, regardless of whether one is driving drunk or driving sober, the use of proper attire tends to make police officers somewhat more compassionate in their subsequent treatment after a traffic-related arrest.
Fully clothed drivers, to say the least, have a better chance of convincing officers of their sobriety than men clad in only their skivvies and footwear. So, noble drivers—buckled up, sober up, and, for the love of civilization, put on some pants.
The tragic death of a pedestrian due to a DUI accident hit a Florida community hard last week, but the bizarre survival of the walker’s dog offered a unique story of its own.
A man who was kayaking in the Gulf of Mexico discovered the pedestrian’s injured dog struggling to swim several hundred yards off the Florida coast, according to a story in the Washington Post.
Sources indicate that 53-year-old Donna Chen was jogging with her dog, Barney, on a sidewalk in Siesta Key, Florida, an island located about 40 miles south of St. Petersburg.
According to a police report, Chen and her dog were struck by 22-year-old Blake Talman, who had been involved in an accident moments before and struck the jogging woman while he was attempting to flee the scene.
After the accident, an injured Barney, a Hungarian Vizsla, leapt into the ocean out of fear and began swimmingly desperately out to sea.
Several hours later, a vacationing kayaker from Bellingham, Washington discovered Barney swimming towards him while the man was trying to fish.
The kayaker, Rory O’Connor, claims that he pulled Barney into the water and noted that the dog appeared “really scared.” In addition, the dog had several wounds on his leg and was bleeding profusely. O’Connor captured the rescue on his video camera, and the footage has become something of a viral hit.
When O’Connor took the dog ashore, his sister observed that Barney was a Vizsla and reminded her brother that the dog might have a microchip, an increasingly common used by pet owners to identify lost animals.
Shortly thereafter, O’Connor took Barney to a veterinarian, who discovered a microchip and was able to identify the dog’s owner. Then, O’Connor was able to contact Chen’s family, which is how he learned of the woman’s tragic death.
Police are still befuddled as to how the dog managed to swim more than a mile away from the accident, and this feat may remain a mystery. Sources indicate that the dog is recovering and should soon return back to full health.
Police, however, declined to comment on the dog because the vase is a vehicular homicide and remains under investigation.
Of course, despite the remarkable story of Barney’s rescue, Chen’s family is mourning her loss, which could have been prevented.
Sources say that Talman, the driver who struck Chen, is facing charges of DUI manslaughter, and is being held without bail at the Sarasota County Jail in Florida. There is little doubt that Talman will likely face an extended period behind bars for the accident.
While routine DUI arrests typically involve some jail time, a suspended license, or a fine, felony DUIs—especially those that involve the death of an innocent person—are an entirely different matter.
When most people are pulled over for a DUI, they do not have any text on their clothing announcing the fact that they are drunk. Usually, police must use context clues and modern technology to determine if a driver is inebriated.
A recent driver on Long Island in New York, though, made the arresting officer’s job much easier by wearing a t-shirt saying “I’m a drunk” during his DUI arrest.
In a story that is sure to induce eye-rolling and head-slapping from knowing readers, Kevin Daly was faced with an awkward situation when he was arrested under suspicion of a DUI while wearing a t-shirt proclaiming his guilt.
According to a report from the New Jersey Star-Ledger, the t-shirt’s primary slogan was printed in bold letters and was surrounded by the equally incriminating claim that “I’m not an alcoholic … alcoholics go to meetings.”
Depending on the result of his DUI sentencing, Daly may soon have an opportunity to prove his t-shirt false, as mandatory alcohol counseling for former drunk drivers is a common DUI law in many U.S. states.
Sources indicate that Daly’s arrest was embarrassing for reasons other than the poor clothing selection, as well. The police report claims that Daly slammed his 2000 Saturn into a parked police cruiser around 1:45 a.m. on a Thursday morning.
The police cruiser was parked on the side of the highway to catch drunk drivers. In this situation, the arresting officer was spared the expense of having to chase the suspect, although the police department was probably displeased with having to repair the beat-up cruiser.
Fortunately, though, the police officer who was in the car was not seriously injured, but he was taken to the hospital for treatment for minor wounds.
In his initial hearing, Daly was charged with driving while intoxicated and, perhaps not surprisingly, was served with several summonses for unresolved traffic incidents.
It is fair to assume that, at his trial, Daly will be encouraged by his DUI lawyer to wear something a bit more practical, like a suit and tie, or anything without the words “I’m a drunk” printed clearly on the front.
The possible consequences Daly will face at trial depend on whether this is his first DUI offense, as well as other circumstances of the case. In many DUI decisions, offenders must relinquish their license, serve some jail time, or pay a hefty fine.
Cases in which DUI drivers injure other people, or cause serious property damage, usually see harsher sentences. In addition, repeat DUI offenders typically face more severe punishments than people who have committed their first DUI offense.
And, it should be noted that each state has a unique set of DUI laws, and some states are much stricter than others. Despite these variations, though, there has been a national trend in recent years to create stronger DUI laws.