Will This Florida Drunk Driving Crash Prompt New Interlock Laws?

Florida drunk driving It’s inevitable that police officers will be hurt or killed in the line of duty, and it’s especially sad when they are attempting to rescue an innocent person from crash site. Unfortunately, it’s all too common for police officers to be killed or injured while helping others, and one Florida drunk driving crash has claimed another victim.

It happened in Miami-Dade County in the early hours. A Florida Highway Patrol trooper was at the scene of a crash. While he was standing at the scene another car hit one of the crashed cars and the impact sent the other crashed car straight into the officer.

The officer was hit and landed a distance away from the cars. He was left with serious injuries. The driver who caused the second crash was given a breathalyzer test and was found to have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .201. That’s almost triple the legal limit of .08.  After an investigation of the crash police arrested him on a Florida drunk driving charge and DUI causing damage.

Thankfully the officer will recover from his injuries, but other police officers haven’t been as lucky. Officer Noah Leotta of Maryland was working a DUI check stop when a car crashed into him. The impact ended his life. Leotta’s death was one of the reasons why Maryland was spurred to pass an all offender ignition interlock law.

An ignition interlock device is a device that requires all drunk driving offenders, including first time offenders with a BAC of .08 or higher, to blow an alcohol-free sample before they can start the car. It’s been proven that all offender ignition interlock laws save lives and prevent thousands of people from driving after they attempt to start their cars.

Could this crash mean that Florida will begin a serious effort to pass such a law in the sunshine state? Florida has let an all offender ignition interlock law die before it came to a final vote on more than one occasion, but all it takes is one serious drunk driving case to motivate lawmakers to get behind a new bill. Will this be the case for Florida?

Parenting Fail: Mom Charged With DWI With Child In Back Seat

family in carNo one should ever drink and drive, but if you’re determined to do so, the least you can do is leave your children at home. This is a message that most parents should easily understand, but you’d be amazed at how many decide that getting charged with DWI is not a big deal with or without their kids along. One Santa Fe, New Mexico mother was just charged with DWI for a second time after she crashed her van. That’s bad enough, but she had a young child along with her too.

Police arrived on the scene of a crash after someone reported a driver who drove into a parking lot barrier at a MacDonald’s restaurant. When they arrived they found a woman in her underwear lying across the seats and there was blood splattered everywhere. The van windows were rolled down and it was below freezing, and an open container of alcohol lay on the floor. There was also a child strapped into a car seat in the back.

That paints a pretty grisly image, so it’s hard to understand why this offender wasn’t happy for the help when police showed up. When paramedics cleaned her up she yelled at police officers, and they had to obtain a warrant to do a blood draw. She was arrested, charged with DWI, and also received a third-degree felony count of child abuse. Her child has been placed with relatives, and she’s going to face the consequences of her second DWI arrest.

In New Mexico that means stiff penalties. She could spend up to one year in jail, pay up to $1,000 in fines, and attend an alcohol evaluation. She’ll also lose her driver’s license for two years, and she’ll be required to drive with an ignition interlock for two years.

The penalties for her DWI in New Mexico might be hard for her to deal with, but what’s much harder to process is that she put a child in grave danger. It’s a good lesson for any parent who has wondered whether or not to drink and drive the kids home. Putting your child in the car with you after you’ve been drinking is never a good idea.

Clearly Someone Likes the New Utah Drunk Driving Law

new-utah-drunk-driving-bacLawmakers in Utah knew they faced an uphill battle when they changed the legal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) from the US standard of .08 to .05. They would acknowledge that there have been loud detractors to the new Utah drunk driving law, but the overwhelming response to the new BAC has been positive.

Now they have even more proof that it was a good step in the right direction. Thanks to the new Utah drunk driving law, the state will receive the Prince Michael International Road Safety Award. The award will recognize everyone involved in changing the BAC including the Utah Department of Transportation, Utah Department of Public Safety, the Utah Legislature, and the Governor.

Representatives have to travel all the way to England to receive the award, and when they are in Europe they’ll realize that having a .05 legal BAC isn’t that unusual after all. Most European countries, with the exception of England, have their legal BAC set at .05. Scotland has even had a .05 BAC since 2014.

This award is coming at a time when opponents to Utah’s drunk driving law are becoming more vocal. The deadline for the change is December 30th, 2018, and some groups have gone as far as taking out ads in newspapers in an attempt to have the ad repealed.

The problem? Their argument that the .05 BAC unfairly targets moderate drinkers instead of dangerous drunk drivers doesn’t stand up. It’s a fact that any amount of alcohol can affect your driving skills, so even if you’ve only had one or two drinks, you shouldn’t be behind the wheel of a car. The .05 blood limit enforces that fact, and the ultimate benefit of the BAC change will be in how the public perceives drinking and driving.

If someone knows a single drink could mean their BAC is close to or at .05, they might think twice about putting the keys in the ignition. That change in perception could save lives, and saving lives is the goal of any state drunk driving law.

Time will show: Utah is ahead of the curve with their new BAC. Hopefully the rest of the US will follow.


Police Officer Saved Her. Then He Arrested Her For Florida Drunk Driving

Florida drunk driving Florida is one of those states where, despite the best efforts, police still struggle with drunk drivers. Florida drunk driving is so bad that police have seen DUI golf cart crashes leading to death, parents getting called in for DUI by their kids, and naked drunk drivers who clearly couldn’t stand the heat and humidity.

But one recent Florida drunk driving arrest may just top them all, and that’s because a police officer had to move quickly between saving a life and arresting that very same person for drunk driving.

Thanks to video capture on a dashcam, a Florida Highway Patrol trooper can be seen approaching a vehicle in Naples, Florida late one night. The car had driven onto the shoulder of a busy interstate, and you can hear him asking the driver to wake up through the glass of the window.

When she wouldn’t wake up the officer broke the window and checked her pulse. Finding her lifeless, he pulled her from the car and began to administer CPR until she was breathing again. She was sent to the hospital via ambulance, and when they took her blood alcohol content (BAC) they found she was at .039.

With a BAC that high, she was at the lethal level for alcohol poisoning. That’s most likely why she was unresponsive and her heart stopped, and she’s extremely fortunate someone found her in that condition and brought her back to life. Once she’d recovered the police officer handed her charges for Florida drunk driving.

It just goes to show that some drunk drivers don’t have a clue how drunk they are before they drive a car. Not everyone in that condition would pull over on the side of the road before they lost consciousness, and although she’ll now face the fines, penalties, and driver’s license suspension associated with a Florida drunk driving charge, it is thanks to that arrest that she’s alive today.

Like Strange Drunk Driving Stories? Try Burger King On For Size

strange drunk driving burger kingThere were a lot of strange drunk driving cases in 2017, and many of them involved McDonald’s drive-thru restaurants. It seems like the place to be when you want a snack after a night out, and people don’t mind driving drunk to get there.

But one man in Galesburg, Illinois decided he wanted Burger King instead of McDonalds after a night out, and he wanted to do a little identity theft too. This strange drunk driving story began when he showed up at the restaurant just before one am. Witnesses promptly called him into the police after he was spotted driving erratically in the parking lot. Police arrived just after he almost hit a pedestrian and crashed his car.

When they asked him what his name was, he said it was “Burger King.” In addition to him giving offering up such an odd and obvious name, police noted that he smelt of alcohol and had glassy eyes.

Unlike the real Burger King, this driver wasn’t happy to assist anyone. He refused to cooperate with the police, and when medical assistance arrived, he used racial slurs to try to get rid of them. He was so steadfast in his refusal to cooperate that police had to pick him up and carry him to the police station, and he promised them that Donald Trump was coming to beat them up.

This strange drunk driving case doesn’t end with this man being jailed either. He was sent to the hospital for assessment and he told the doctors that another doctor was coming to give him a million dollars. When he was sent back to jail he told the police officers that they were Satan worshipers.

All in all, it was clear that the man who claimed to be Burger King was actually just really drunk. He was charged with driving under the influence in Illinois, reckless driving, and resisting arrest.

It’s another strange drunk driving story in a year of strange drunk driving stories, and it goes to show what some people will do when they are caught drunk behind the wheel.

Yes, That’s Santa Arresting The Abominable Snowman For DUI In Oregon

arrested for dui in oregon The weather outside is frightful, and so are the conditions on the roads in Oregon state. That’s where, according a news release by St.Helens Police Department, a strange white creature that goes by the name of Abominable T. Snowman was arrested for DUI in Oregon.

It sounds like a tall tale, but it’s not a plot you’ll see in any holiday movie. Abominable T. Snowman was arrested for drunk driving by an honorary police officer named Officer Claus. Apparently Officer Claus is an elusive officer who only appears during the busiest drunk driving season of the year. This year he managed to nab his prime suspect after he made the poor choice to drive while over the legal limit.

He admitted to driving home after a party where he imbibed too many glasses of peppermint schnapps, and Mr.Snowman was “arrested” on charges of DUI in Oregon. He was also charged with reckless driving. When asked what his blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was at the time of arrest, Officer Claus stated that he was .16, double the legal limit.

arrested for DUI in OregonMr.Snowman was fingerprinted and sent to cool his heels in a jail cell, and the last anyone heard of him he was waiting for his court date to appear on DUI charges. Officer Claus made a stern statement in response to the arrest: “Mr. Snowman is very lucky that more serious property damage or injury to a pedestrian or fellow driver did not occur. However, his holiday season will be significantly less cheery this year as he faces potential jail time and fines. We hope that he can be a lesson to anyone that may consider drinking and driving during the holidays.”

Whether you’ve been drinking alcohol, using marijuana, or have ingested some other type of drug, it shouldn’t take the example of a mythical creature like Mr.Snowman to stop you from getting behind the wheel while impaired. That’s why the moral to this story is simple: the best way to stay safe during the most dangerous time of the year is to always drive sober.

Hard To Believe, But This Texas DWI Crash Caused By Firefighter

Epic fail sign - Texas DWI There’s not much that can be said when a public servant makes the choice to drink and drive. It’s hard to understand how, after witnessing the crashes when someone drives drunk, they could do it themselves. It’s common too, or at least it might seem that way after a recent Texas DWI crash involving an off-duty firefighter.

The Dallas-based firefighter, Horace Shaw III, was driving after drinking at a local restaurant. He was speeding when he drove over a hill and crashed into an SUV with two occupants: a pregnant teenage girl and her boyfriend. They were both ejected from the vehicle and the teen, Alyssa Pimental, died of her injuries. Her unborn baby died as well.

According to witnesses who were there after the crash, Shaw couldn’t walk straight. He declined to answer questions and was taken to jail. Since that time he’s been charged with intoxication manslaughter, and that means a stiff sentence for causing a Texas DWI crash.

An intoxication manslaughter charge in Texas is much more severe than a first or even second Texas DWI offense. This is a second-degree felony. The offender, whether that person is a public servant or just a citizen of Texas, may spend up to 20 years in prison. He could also have to pay up to $10,000 in fines, and he’ll have to perform community service as well.

The tragedy of this Texas DWI crash is that a mother and her unborn baby were killed, all because someone decided to drive drunk. It’s horrible that a firefighter caused it; a man who worked with the department for 12 years, because he should have known better. Someone on the front lines of a drunk and drugged driving should have realized what one or two drinks could do to their driving skills. If he had, this never would have happened.


Man 14 Years Late For His Drugged Driving Charge In Florida

drugged driving charge in FloridaYou’d assume someone convicted of a crime and handed a jail sentence would stick around and work their way through the penalty handed to them by the judge. That’s usually the way it goes, but it doesn’t always happen that way. One man in West Palm Beach is an example of this – he skipped town for 14 years on a Florida drugged driving charge.

In May of 2000, the man ran a red light in a Ford F-150 and crashed into a Nissan Quest driven by a married mother of two. He was high on the drug GHB at the time. The crash was so violent that a witness said the car seat was pushed toward the back of the van, and she died of her injuries.

The man was convicted on a drugged driving charge in Florida in 2001, but he didn’t take the sentence seriously. When he was ordered to show up for his jail sentence in March of 2003, he never showed up.

He appealed the conviction in Palm Beach County court, and when that appeal failed he cut off his ankle bracelet and fled to the Bahamas.

He did spend time in custody in the Bahamas relating to the charges in Florida, and after he exhausted all of his appeals and was ordered to be extradited, he was picked up and sent back to the USA. Now he’s facing two failure-to-appear charges in Palm Beach County, and it seems unlikely he’ll be able to walk away again.

A DUI is considered driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or both, so a drugged driving crash like this one comes with the same fines, penalties, and in this case, jail time, as a drunk driving crash. He may have cut and ran from the consequences, but just like time doesn’t heal all wounds, time also doesn’t clear your record when you’ve killed someone due to drugged driving.

Happy New Year From Guardian Interlock

happy new year 2017 is now in the history books, and 2018 is finally here. With a new year to begin, you might be considering new resolutions or just looking for a fresh new start. No matter what your goals or resolutions, Guardian Interlock would like to wish you the very best in this new year, and hope you find success in all that you do.

Happy New Year from Guardian Interlock!


Friday Fallout: Here’s Why Drunk Driving On New Year’s Eve Is A Bad Idea

drunk driving on New Year's EveDecember 31st is here again, and as 2017 fades away and a fresh new year begins, it’s important to look back, reflect, and count all of the things you could lose if you get caught drunk driving on New Year’s Eve. If listing your family, friends, job, and home isn’t enough, police want you to give you a few other reasons you might want to avoid drinking and driving.

Fresno police just announced they are bringing back a controversial California DUI program called bar watch. Bar watch places undercover police officers in different drinking establishments. These officers will keep an eye on bar patrons, and if they think someone is about to drink and drive, they’ll follow that person to their car and will stop them from getting in and driving.

The bottom line: they aren’t going to let anyone in Fresno drink and drive, and neither are the police in Macon, Georgia. Although it’s almost on the other side of the country, Macon police are also hosting an anti-DUI program called ‘Drive sober or get pulled over.’ It’s an initiative that many states have used to fight drunk driving, and police will be out in force to catch anyone drunk driving on New Year’s Eve.

They’re running the program from December 15th to January 2nd, 2018, and police across the entire state of Georgia will be on the roads looking for drunk drivers. They’re warning all Georgia drivers that if they do drink and drive, being on Santa’s naughty list will be the least of their worries. Instead of a cozy holiday with family, they could be spending time inside a jail cell.

Whether you’re drinking and driving in California or hitting the road under the influence in Georgia, these two programs show that, no matter where you are in the USA this New Year’s, your best option is to drive sober.

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