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November 2012 Archives

Flawed California Study Claims More Drugged than Drunk Drivers

We thought the idiocy was confined to California when, on Thanksgiving night, the evening news proclaimed that drugged driving was on the rise and overtaking drunk driving based on a flawed study that we had read a few days before.

Unfortunately, word of the (very flawed) study has spread, with such headlines as the Atlanta Journal-Constitution's "Study: More drivers on drugs than booze". Yes, we're all smoking crack and driving.

Parents, please hide your children.

Former Governor's Son Arrested for DUI While Parked

It’s well known trivia that many of this state’s former governors are locked up in prison. Their kids, however, usually manage to stay out of the family business.

George Ryan, Jr. was arrested for a pretty unique DUI last week. He was found sleeping behind the wheel of a running pickup truck, parked across multiple spaces, in a White Castle parking lot in Bradley, IL, reports CBS Chicago.

South Dakota's 24/7 Program Reduces Repeat DUI Offenses

It really can be a beautiful thing when common sense is applied to a problem to devise a workable solution. South Dakota, like every other state in the Union, had a bit of a problem with repeat drunk drivers. Instead of the common answer of MOAR JAIL TIME! MOARRR!!, the Dakotans brain stormed for a different solution that would curb even more drunk drivers.

Drunk drivers need _____ to drive drunk.

What's that? You guessed it. Booze! If you keep drunk drivers sober, they won't drive drunk. Ladies and gentlemen, we introduce to you the 24/7 Sobriety Project.

'No Refusal' Operation Nets 4 Arrests; More Planned for Thanksgiving

We're all familiar with implied consent laws by now, right? These laws state that a driver, when obtaining a license in Illinois (or an any other state), consents in advance to submit to a test of his or her blood alcohol content when requested to do so, assuming the officer has a reasonable suspicion of intoxication.

However, even with that advanced implied consent, a driver can still refuse to voluntarily submit to a blood, breath, or urine test. The penalty for that refusal is a license suspension and a presumption that he knew he was guilty of DUI (which is often not enough to convict). The law regarding forced blood draws is still murky, but will hopefully be cleared up by the Supreme Court. Until then, the closest clearly legal option for law enforcement is a "no refusal" operation.

87-Year-Old Marine Hit in Crosswalk by Drunk Driver, Survives

Wayne Davis was crossing the street when 26-year-old repeat offender Michael Izeta blasted through a red light and sent the 87-year-old former Marine flying through the air. Amazingly enough, despite the auto versus pedestrian accident and a brain bleed, the victim is still alive, though in critical condition, reports the Chicago Tribune.

Izeta, meanwhile, is facing a lengthy prison sentence.

Sometimes, even in this twisted, cold world, there can be justice.

Head-On Collision Leads to Reckless Homicide Charges

Another fatal drunk driving case, much like the others. Nineteen-year-old Dalton Jones of Chandlerville, Illinois was driving, allegedly under the influence, eastbound on Route 125 in Cass County. He crossed over the center divider and collided head-on with 23-year-old Yvonne Tyson, who was pronounced dead at the scene, reports WLDS 1180.

The evidence against Jones is pretty clear. There is some indication that he had consumed alcohol. He also had drug paraphernalia and marijuana in his possession at the time of the accident. Even if he was not presently under the influence of weed, the mere presence of cannabis in his system, even from days before, would suffice for a DUI conviction. In other words, he was doubly-DUI.

Another School Bus Driver Gets DUI With Kids on Board

It's inevitable, right? Alcoholism is a fact of life for many. School busses are a constant in many cities. Eventually, the two have to interact.

Tuesday morning, a police officer was flagged down by an irate driver that stated that a rogue school bus had nearly rear-ended him three times. The officer tried to signal the bus driver to stop, but was either ignored or not noticed, so he had to grab his police cruiser and pull the bus over, reports the Chicago Tribune.

Prosecutors Fight to Convict Fatal Hit-and-run Driver of DUI

On Sunday morning, at around 3:30 a.m., Tundun Lawani was struck by a hit-and-run driver in Knox County, Illinois. The Knox College junior was pronounced dead later that morning at Cottage Hospital. Surveillance footage helped police identify 33-year-old Lakeesha Smith's blue 1997 Ford Taurus. According to the Knox Student, she admitted drinking between 11 p.m. and 2 a.m. and her blood alcohol content was 0.72 four hours after the incident.

Smith currently faces charges for leaving the scene of a fatality, two counts of aggravated DUI, and the reckless homicide charge that was added on Monday.

Our Favorite Repeat Offender, Juan Diaz Had Four IL Licenses

More details have emerged about Juan Diaz’s past, and they are so absurd that they are actually amusing …. other than the whole drunk driving part. It turns out Mr. Diaz had as many as 8 different aliases, 4 Illinois driver’s licenses, 15 DUI convictions, 4 convictions for driving on a revoked license, and a couple of warrants out for his arrest.

And yet, he was still driving on the I-90.

As we reported on Tuesday, Diaz was caught by a pair of good Samaritans that followed his swerving van and alerted police. According to CBS Chicago, when he was pulled over, he initially claimed that he had never possessed a driver’s license and was headed home from a friend’s house after consuming two beers. He reportedly said all of this while speaking slowly, in slurred speech, with bloodshot eyes, while reeking of alcohol.