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.
Shockingly enough, the bus driver, 41-year-old Kenny Sellers, smelt of alcohol and had bloodshot eyes. According to officers, he also failed a field sobriety test and refused to submit to a chemical test.
The trouble didn't end there, however. Once he got to the police station, he allegedly tried to escape and then fought with an officer. In total, he received seven citations, including a felony count of aggravated DUI for a bus driver and aggravated battery against a police officer.
Did we mention that there were four kids on board? They were eventually dropped off at Hawthorne Elementary School.
Either the legislature is clairvoyant, or this isn't the first time a drunk driver operated a school bus full of children. The aggravated felony DUI statute specifically prohibits driving a school bus full of children while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Unless the defendant is a repeat offender, aggravated DUIs are generally a class 4 felony, which means a sentence of up to three years.
For Mr. Sellers, we've already answered the time honored question of whether or not it is advisable to refuse a BAC test (hint: no). Even if you avoid a forced blood draw, you can still be convicted on the failed field sobriety test and the observations of the officer (such as the bloodshot eyes and whiskey breath). Plus, according to the implied consent statute, the prosecutor can argue that your refusal indicates that you were conscious of your guilt.