Florida DUI Shows Police Don’t Horse Around

florida dui on a horseIt seems as if people getting arrested for drunk driving in Florida are always taking the top spots in local news, but some Florida DUI arrests are definitely stranger than others.

Take one Florida DUI arrest that happened recently. A woman from Polk City was heading down the highway when multiple people began calling her in for drunk driving. She wasn’t swerving in and out of her lane or slamming on her brakes behind these cars, so why was she reported?

It turns out this drunk driver was riding a horse down the highway at the time of her arrest. The people who called her in said she appeared drunk, confused, and either she, the horse, or both were possibly in danger.

When police arrived they found her riding the horse on the busy road, and they asked her to dismount for a field sobriety test. They also asked her to submit to a breathalyzer test, and when she did she registered a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .161.

Most people charged with a Florida DUI have a BAC over .08, so she was definitely over the legal limit. Just like in many other states, a horse is also considered a mode of transport.

This drunk driver has now been charged with DUI and animal neglect.  The horse was taken to a local shelter and the driver was taken to jail. It’s not clear whether she’s a repeat offender, but if she is and she’s convicted on her Florida DUI charge she could spend time in jail, pay stiff fines, and possibly be required to install an ignition interlock in any vehicle she drives.

If she is required to use an ignition interlock, she’ll also be banned from riding a horse. That’s because the law states you must only drive a vehicle with an ignition interlock. Since you can’t  install an ignition interlock on a horse, you can’t ride one during your period of restriction.

No matter where you live or what you drive, your best bet to avoid strange and dangerous situations like these is to drive sober, and that includes when you’re out on your horse.

Friday Fallout: CA Drunk Driving Arrest Leads To Proposal

California drunk driving Most California drunk driving arrests involve the roadside sobriety test, but not every DUI stop in the state leads to a drunk driving charge.

Take one case in Palmdale that happened recently. It was the middle of a sunny day and a female driver had just been pulled over for suspected drunk driving. She was asked by the police officer to take a field sobriety test, and she complied.

There are a few different types of field sobriety tests used by police in the United States. The Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN) test involves an officer asking you to track the movement of a pen or finger with your eyes. The One-Leg Stand Test involves you standing on one foot and attempting to balance. The last test is the Walk-and-Turn Test.

The Walk-and-Turn Test involves you taking nine steps in a straight line, walking precisely from heel to toe. When you’re walking you’ll be counting out loud, and the officer who has suspected you of drunk driving will assess you as you walk.

What normally happens when you turn around is that the arresting officer will make a judgement call on whether or not you should be asked to submit to a breathalyzer. In this case, the female driver taking the roadside sobriety test was asked to make a judgement call of her own.

When she turned around she found her boyfriend, a California deputy himself, on one knee with a ring in his hand. He had decided to stage the stop in order to propose to her, and he felt like the Walk-and-Turn Test would give him the perfect opportunity to do so.

It’s definitely not the way a California drunk driving stop normally pans out, but she must have been really relieved that she wasn’t actually suspected of drunk driving and even happier after she said yes and received her ring.

It just goes to show; some California drunk driving stops do have the possibility of having a happy ending.

Illinois Drunk Driver Hits Fire Hydrant In Front of Fire Fighters

Shocked manWhen you mix alcohol and driving, you can get yourself in a lot of crazy situations. Some of these situations can lead to serious trouble for the driver. After an Illinois drunk driving suspect crashed his car, he proved that point in an ironic sort of way.

The man from Naperville, Illinois was driving when in the early morning hours when he took a curve and smashed right into a fire hydrant. By coincidence the crash was witnessed by a group of fire fighters who were heading back to the station. Police called to the scene found a drunk driver with open alcohol inside the vehicle.

Unfortunately for this drunk driver, it wasn’t the first time he made the choice to get behind the wheel drunk. This was his second Illinois drunk driving charge in two months. He’s now been charged with felony aggravated DUI, driving with a suspended license, and open alcohol.

With two drunk driving charges within two months, this offender is going to see his fair share of drunk driving penalties. As a first offender he would have received a one year driver’s license suspension, a maximum fine of $2,500, and if he were approved for a Monitored Device Driving Permit (MDDP), would have able to install an ignition interlock device during his time of suspension.

Because he ignored his driver’s license suspension and drove drunk again, he’s no longer a first offender. That means he’s more likely to receive, at a minimum, a driver’s license suspension of five years, mandatory jail time or community service, and maximum fines of $2,500.

It’s not every day you crash your vehicle into a fire hydrant in front of a group of fire fighters, but maybe that crash was the wakeup call this offender needed to finally stop making the choice to drink and drive.

There Were Quite A Few Strange DUIs In September

strange DUIsA lot can happen when you mix alcohol and driving, and over the past month there have been quite a few strange DUIs recorded on police blotters that really make you wonder what that driver was thinking.

A DWI street sweeper joy ride

What are the odds that someone would look at a street sweeper and decide it’s the perfect vehicle to take for a joyride? Unfortunately, one drunk driver in Raleigh, North Carolina made that decision and his fun ride ended in felony charge.

The man jumped on board the street sweeper when the driver was emptying trash cans at a local mall. He drove it around the mall parking lot, smashing into another vehicle, and was only stopped when he ran it over a median. The $50,000 vehicle was damaged and he was charged with felony larceny, DWI, and hit and run.

Shenanigans are great, but not when you’re driving

When you spot someone wearing a t-shirt that says “Beer + Beer = Shenanigans,” you know there’s a strong likelihood that their entire evening could easily go off the rails. That’s exactly what happened to the wearer of such a t-shirt in Sterling, Connecticut.

The man was pulled over by police after they saw him driving into the sidewalk with his vehicle, and he failed sobriety tests, had marijuana in his possession, and had a 12-inch machete in his car. He received a host of charges including operating under the influence of alcohol (OUI) and now has a court date. For his sake, let’s hope he chooses another t-shirt for his day in court.

Assault is no laughing matter; neither is drunk driving

Domestic assault isn’t anything to joke about, and after a St.Cloud, Minnesota woman called in a complaint about a domestic assault early one morning, police were on the scene quickly. They discovered that no such assault had taken place, and the woman who called it in was actually a drunk driver.

When police arrived and talked to her, she appeared to be under the influence. She said she’d had an argument with her husband and drove her vehicle home. Although she did exhibit injuries on her face, it turns out that she had fallen while she was walking and hurt her eye. Once she submitted to a breathalyzer test she blew double the legal limit, so police charged her with DWI.

These are just three examples of strange DUIs in September. Although each had a different ending, the main takeaway for everyone should be one thing: you can avoid your own strange DUI by handing the keys to a sober driver if you’ve been drinking.

 

Arrested For DUI After Police Read Her Facebook Messages

arrested for DUIIt’s a tale as old as time: someone posts something on their Facebook wall and it comes back to bite them. It can happen to anyone, and it did happen to a driver who was arrested for DUI recently. Her case is a good lesson for anyone who’s tempted to drink, drive, and then chat about it online.

She was involved in a crash near Troy, Michigan. She had been driving around one a.m. when she crashed into another vehicle. Instead of sticking around, she decided to abandon her car and walk away.

She checked into a nearby hotel where she told the front desk clerk that she’d been drinking, driving, and had crashed her car. When police arrived and questioned her she admitted to being in the crash but wouldn’t admit to driving the vehicle and wouldn’t say who had been driving.

Police noticed she had been using the hotel computer, and unfortunately for the driver, she had left the page open to her Facebook profile. The page showed she had been sending messages to a friend that detailed the crash and admitted she was drunk.

At that point she submitted to a breathalyzer test and was found to have a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.12. She was charged with operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, leaving the scene of a crash, and driving on an expired license.

There are a few lessons you can take away from this case. One, don’t drink and drive. If she would have been sober she may not have crashed in the first place. Two, don’t drive on a suspended driver’s license. It’s for this very reason that many states have all offender ignition interlock laws for anyone arrested for DUI, and it’s far better to obtain a restricted license and drive with an interlock than take your chances.

Last, but not least, what you post online stays online, so don’t feel as though it’s safe to talk about you drunk driving on Facebook or anywhere else. It could come back to haunt you.

PSAs In Virtual World Could Stop Someone From Being Arrested For DUI

arrested for DUI gamer study

Image from theguardian.com

Gamers, whether they’re young or old, have often been stereo-typically classified as a form of zombie who stares at a screen and plays games all day, sometimes from the cozy confines of his or her parent’s basement.

But that’s not the reality for most modern-day, college gamers: these are young adults enrolled in school who simply enjoy the characters, action, and story-line behind the game, and because this group is so in tune with what they’re playing, they were the perfect focus group for a study that could predict whether or not they may be arrested for DUI in the future.

It sounds strange to place warnings about the dangers of drunk driving in a virtual world, but that’s exactly what researchers did in a three-part study. It focused on almost 400 college-age gamers playing a game, and researchers inserted anti-drunk driving messages from Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) in the background of situations where the gamer would be engaged in shooting, driving, or other tasks. Their theory was that if they timed the placements at moments when the participant was completely engaged, there was a higher likelihood that they would accept the messages as the truth.

Some of the messages said, “I’m just buzzed” while showing a crash scene, while others said “Don’t drink and drive” and the poster had bullet holes all over it.

What they found after the study was that the participants who played and saw the PSAs, both male and female, said they had were much less willing to drink and drive in the future. That means they are much less likely to be arrested for DUI outside of the virtual world, and even on such a small scale, that’s good news.

The study was so successful that it’s getting attention from a branch of the Federal Government for possible use as a strategy to reduce smoking and e-cigarette use. One group just received an almost $400,000 grant to test for themselves how these graphics will work to reduce smoking rates, so the sky is the limit as to how they could implement a program like this for drunk driving.

Will video games be the path to stopping this generation from being arrested for DUI? It’s hard to tell from one study, but if these gamers are any indication, this might be one of the path ways to sober drivers in the future.

After DUI crash, Victim Has A Bittersweet Ending

DUI crash

Image from Today.com

There aren’t many happy endings after a DUI crash, and when the dust settles the people involved in the crash are either killed, injured, or arrested for drunk driving. But despite his injuries one victim of a DUI crash that occurred in East Vail, Colorado had a bittersweet ending, and now a man and his dog are both alive and have just been reunited.

Chance Patterson was driving home after work with his two dogs in the car; a German Shepard named Carlitos and a pit bull named Izzy. They had been at a doggy daycare and Patterson had just picked them up. The next thing he knew a drunk driver had crashed into him after crossing the center lane, totaling his car and leaving him with serious injuries. When he asked whether or not his dogs lived through the crash he was told that Carlitos had died at the scene and Izzy was nowhere to be found.

He was taken to the hospital with several broken bones and a lacerated lung, so he couldn’t go out and search for Izzy. That’s when the East Vail community kicked into overdrive looking for the dog, and as volunteers searched there were several reports of people spotting the frightened pit bull.

Thankfully the owner of the doggie daycare Izzy frequents went out to look for her too, and when she called out to her, Izzy was happy to see a familiar face. She survived the crash and only had a sprained toe, and she stayed with a friend until Patterson was released from the hospital and he and Izzy were reunited.

Despite his injuries and the fact that one of his dogs was killed, Patterson says he has no ill will toward the drunk driver. Although specifics about the drunk driver’s charges aren’t known, if she’s convicted for the DUI crash and she’s a first offender she could receive at a minimum up to one year in jail, community service hours, driver’s license suspension for at least nine months, and an ignition interlock when she qualifies to have her license reinstated.

It’s tragic that he lost one dog, but if you asked him Chance Patterson would tell you that being reunited with Izzy is definitely a happy ending after experiencing the horror of a DUI crash.

Florida Woman Reports Drunk Driver, Gets Crashed Into Herself

report a drunk driverPolice encourage concerned citizens to report a drunk driver by dialing 911, but there are always a few warnings attached: driving behind or beside someone who is driving drunk can be extremely dangerous, so when you decide to report a drunk driver you should keep a safe distance, describe the landmarks around you, and always defer to the dispatcher’s advice about what to do once you’ve relayed the information.

A woman in Fort Myers, Florida might be wishing she’d done just that after she called in to report a drunk driver recently. She dialed 911 around two in the afternoon after spotting someone who was driving erratically, and she and her two passengers followed along behind the driver for nine minutes while her friend filmed the suspected drunk driver for Facebook Live.

After they witnessed the drunk driver crash into a bridge wall on a busy highway, they decided to pull the car right in front of the drunk driver’s car to stop her from crashing into someone. When she did that she made the drunk driver put on the brakes and stop right in the center of the road, but instead of stoppping she drove her car straight into the witness’s vehicle.

It’s tragic irony that the person who reported her for drunk driving was crashed into by that very same driver, and thankfully no one was seriously injured. For her part the drunk driver was charged with driving under the influence, driving on a suspended license, driving without insurance, and careless driving.

The witness was praised by police for calling 911, but they’d like to send out a strong advisory to anyone who might be tempted to do the same thing: it’s dangerous to stop a drunk driver on your own, so get the license plate, location, and any other information on the vehicle, but don’t put your life at risk trying to prevent them from driving.

You Can Do A Lot Of Damage Before Your Florida DUI Arrest

arrested for drunk driving in Florida A lot of people get behind the wheel of a car and are arrested for drunk driving in Florida because they ask themselves one question before they drive: what’s the worst that could happen? Unfortunately, thanks to the alcohol they’ve just consumed, the answer to that question is usually wrong.

A lot can happen from the moment you put the keys in the ignition to the moment you’re arrested for drunk driving in Florida, and for one driver in Osceola County, the worst case scenario included smashing into 17 cars when trying to park his SUV.

The drunk driver was heading home to a gated community at four in the morning when he decided to skip the gate code and crash his way through. He rammed into the gate and then drove around in circles smashing into cars as he went. In all he damaged 17 vehicles in eight separate crashes, and some of the residents reported over $2,000 in damage.

When police arrived they discovered  he smelt of alcohol, refused to submit to a breathalyzer, and was not interested in being arrested, but he did calm down after they pepper sprayed him. It turns out this wasn’t his first brush with drunk driving. He had his driver’s license suspended for drunk driving in 2013.

What’s the worst that can happen when you have a few drinks and get behind the wheel? In this case, one man is responsible for smashing up 17 vehicles, but it could have turned out far worse. If they weren’t parked cars and people were inside, he could have easily injured or killed someone, all because he was trying to get home after a night out drinking.

It’s just one more crazy drunk driving story in Florida, and one more reason why Florida needs to get tough on drunk drivers by passing an all offender ignition interlock law. This Florida drunk driver has, thankfully, been taken off the roads, but there are many more just like him out there and the only way to stop them is an interlock.

How many drunk driving crashes like this one will it take for Florida lawmakers to pass that law?

Friday Fallout: The Strange Drunk Driving Stories Of August

strange drunk driving storiesMost drunk driving arrests follow a predictable pattern: the driver goes through a checkpoint or is spotted by a police officer, they are pulled over and asked to submit to a breathalyzer test, and if they blow over. 08 they’re arrested for drunk driving. But drunk drivers are unpredictable themselves, and because anything can happen when you’re driving under the influence, there’s a lot of strange drunk driving stories out there that don’t follow a typical pattern.

Take a look at a few of the strange drunk driving stories from August.

Just hitting a pole wasn’t enough for this driver

Hitting a pole with your car is an easy thing to do when you’re driving under the influence, but one man in Detroit wasn’t satisfied with just hitting a pole. He crashed his truck into a utility pole near a playground where kids were playing, and he did it with a 40-ounce beer in his hand.

Not only that, but when police arrived they watched as several more 40-ounce beers came rolling out of his truck, and he was so drunk he tried to flee but he only made it as far as the alley before he was found staggering around.

What can you take from this strange drunk driving story? Go big or go home never applies to drunk driving.

Odds are she would have failed her DUI classes anyway

A repeat offender from Riverside, Illinois was speeding when police pulled her over. The police officer suspected her of drunk driving, and when she was asked to get out her car she told the officer she was speeding because she was late for an appointment.

What’s really ironic is that the appointment she was late for was court-mandated DUI classes, and she was drunk while she was driving there. She blew 0.196 on the breathalyzer, and after her arrest the police discovered she was also driving under the influence of drugs and had open alcohol in the car.

That’s two fails in one day for her: one for driving under the influence, the other for her DUI class.

How drunk do you have to be to hit your own house?

How do you feel the morning after the night when you drove drunk, crashed into your own home, and set it on fire? It’s hard to believe, but that just happened to a Milwaukee man recently.

The man was driving drunk near his home and lost control of his vehicle, smashing straight into his ground floor apartment. People on the second and third floors were forced to climb to safety when the truck caught fire and it spread to the building, but the driver didn’t bother calling the fire department: because he lived there he knew exactly where the garden hose was, and he tried to put the fire out himself.

There was over $70,000 worth of damage to the building and the vehicle, and some neighbors only escaped with what they were wearing. It just goes to show how easy it is for drunk driving to destroy everything you’ve worked for, and everything other people have worked for too, in a split second.

These are definitely strange drunk driving stories, but they’re also pretty common in the world of DUI. When you mix alcohol and driving, anything can and will happen, so if you drink, just don’t drive.

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