If you make the choice to be a drunk driver, you also choose to accept what could come after you put the keys in the ignition. Yes, many people will manage to get home or to wherever they’re going without injuring or killing someone, but you could end up smashing into another car, a pedestrian, a home, tree, or just drive off the road. When that happens, and it happens often, you could end the life of an innocent person and drag their family into a situation where you’re fighting for your freedom and they’re fighting for justice.
That’s exactly what happened in Chicago when drunk driver was driving after a baseball game back in 2013. He was speeding and had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .15 when he struck a cyclist in an intersection. The cyclist died shortly after, and the driver was charged with reckless homicide and aggravated driving under the influence (DUI).
The case finally went to trial recently, and despite the overwhelming evidence against the drunk driver and harsh Illinois drunk driving laws that require up to fourteen years in jail for aggravated DUI, this driver in this case is only receiving ten days in jail.
Is ten days in jail a fair period of time for an offender who took a life thanks to a drunk driving crash? Not if you ask the family of the victim. Yes, this driver will receive four years probation and is required to pay $25,000 in funeral expenses to the victim’s family, but ten days would seem fairly lenient when other offenders have received much more.
That’s the true tragedy of drunk driving crashes. Someone loses their life because a person decides to drink and drive, and the family of the victim loses that person and is forced to wait for justice that may never come.
Unless you say no to drinking and driving and you always find a sober driver, you’ll never be exempt from the possibility that you could turn your life and the lives of innocent people upside down. Say no to drunk driving, even after one drink, and don’t make the same mistake.
The Friday Fallout: Every Friday Guardian Interlock brings you a unique drunk driving case that demonstrates the impact of – or fallout from – drunk driving.