(To: Great Oak High School. You are the best!)
“Court Case Friday”
Driving Under the Influence (DUI) cases are very tragic. Tens of thousands of people are killed or maimed every year by drunk drivers. In fact, drunk drivers kill someone “Every 15 Minutes.” Yet sometimes DUI cases can be entertaining.
Golf Cart on the Freeway
One unique DUI case involved an 85-year-old woman with an extremely high blood alcohol level. The California Highway Patrol (CHP) officer spotted her weaving in the fast lane on the I-5 Freeway near Laguna Hills in Orange County, California. She was driving 25 miles per hour in a golf cart. Traffic was backed up for miles. The woman had been golfing and drinking at a nearby senior citizen’s golf course. She obviously spent more time drinking than golfing. Instead of driving onto the public sidewalk to the next hole, she drove along the sidewalk onto the freeway onramp. It was miracle that she did not cause an accident.
Driving into the Police Department Wall
In another case, a drunk driver became enraged when another driver cut him off on the road. The drunk driver jotted down the license plate number and drove to the local police department to report this outrage. The drunk driver drove into the driveway, across the parking lot, and crashed into the wall of the police department where he was promptly arrested. Fortunately, no one was injured.
“Driving” while Parked on the Shoulder of the Freeway
One case involved a drunk driver who was parked on the shoulder of the eastbound Garden Grove Freeway about 2:15 a.m. after the bars closed. The car lights were on. The engine was revving. The car was in neutral. The driver was gripping the steering wheel looking straight ahead. He thought he was driving. The CHP officer approached and tapped on the passenger window. The startled driver jumped, gasped, and gripped the steering wheel harder, and looked straight ahead. He still thought he was driving on the freeway. The officer tapped on the passenger window again. The driver gasped, jumped, and gripped the steering wheel even harder. The officer told me he was tempted to start running in place and start shouting, “Slow down, I can’t keep up with you much longer!”
DUI Suspect Drives Away in the Police Car
In one case, a CHP officer pulled over a DUI driver on the 57 Freeway adjacent to the Angel baseball stadium. As the officer was conducting field sobriety tests (FSTs) there was a major accident near the center divider. The officer ordered the suspect to sit on the shoulder while the officer dealt with the accident. The officer called in paramedics, fire trucks, and backup officers. After working the accident for a while, he glanced over at the shoulder. The drunk driver was missing. His black and white patrol car was also missing. The suspect’s car was still there. Several officers drove to the suspect’s house. The defendant came to the door dressed in pajamas, and his hair was mussed. He had slurred speech. He was unsteady.
The officer said, “Sir, we think you stole a CHP car.”
He replied, “That’s impossible.”
“Do you mind if we look in your garage?”
When the defendant opened the garage door, he jumped back and yelled, “How did that get there?”
He was charged not only with DUI, but also grand theft auto.
Don’t Drink and Drive!
(I can’t remember if I posted these stories 2 years ago. My memory is not what it used to be.)
(More “Court Case Friday” stories: http://www.londonedition.net)