The Phoenix DUI Law Blog

September 2010 Archives

Michael Cruz Decertified as Arizona Police Officer

We reported in an earlier blog post that Officer Michael Cruz resigned from his position with the Phoenix Police Department after allegations that he had fondled a female driver in exchange for not arresting her for DUI. Now, more than a year after the incident, the Arizona Republic reports that the ex-officer is no longer authorized to serve as a law enforcement official in Arizona.

A final decision made by the Arizona Peace Officer Standards and Training Board concluded that having inappropriate sexual contact with a driver that should have been cited for driving under the influence is enough of a reason to ban a person from law enforcement in the state of Arizona. This rule applies even if the sexual contact was consensual.

City of Gilbert Approves House Arrest Program for DUI Offenders

There's some good news for DUI offenders living in Gilbert. KPHO News reports that city council members unanimously voted to allow convicted drunk drivers to serve part of their jail sentence in their own homes in a house arrest program.

All Gilbert residents that are convicted of DUI must currently do their jail time in Tent City. Yet Gilbert DUI offenders that are sentenced to more than 15 days in jail and meet the qualifications of home detention can now be sent home early and wear a monitored tracking bracelet while on house arrest. The ankle bracelet only allows the offender to be a certain number of feet away from their home.

Glendale Considers A Texting While Driving Ban

Phoenix is currently the only city in the state of Arizona that has an outright ban on texting while driving. However, this might soon change because the city of Glendale is now considering a similar ordinance that would mirror that of Phoenix's ban.

The Arizona Republic reports that a draft of Glendale's no texting while driving ordinance has already been presented to the city council. State lawmakers have also been considering some sort of driver text-message ban for a long time.

Mesa Police Arrest Teenager on Suspicion of DUI

Many people see underage drinking as a serious problem in Arizona and throughout Maricopa County, especially when minors choose to drink and drive.

The Arizona Republic reports that Mesa police officers recently arrested a 17-year-old boy on suspicion of aggravated DUI on Monday. Apparently the teen is familiar with the criminal process in that he has 12 prior arrests, three of which were for failing to appear in court. At just 17 years of age, police say that the boy has already been convicted of theft of means, possession of drug paraphernalia, extreme DUI, assault, and theft charges.

Maralee Mendoza Faces in Criminal Charges in Tucson Hit-and-Run

A driver in Tucson failed to stop at an intersection last week and hit a 19-year-old pedestrian crossing the street in a crosswalk near 1st Avenue and Prince Road. The worst part is that the driver didn't even stop once she hit the pedestrian.

KVOA News reports that the victim of the accident is in critical, but stable condition after being hit by the car. The Tucson Police Department is now conducting a DUI investigation because officers believe that the driver that hit the young woman was impaired at the time of the crash.

Scottsdale Sees Decrease In DUI Arrests

Scottsdale might be one of the few Arizona cities that has seen a decrease in DUI-related incidents and arrests over the past year. The Arizona Republic reported that the state Department of Public Safety and city of Scottsdale have the numbers to prove that there are less reported drunk driving incidents in Scottsdale, compared to last year.

Steve May Calls it Quits in District 17 Race

The former lawmaker that was running as a Republican candidate in the House seat for District 17 withdrew from the race on September 13, surprising many people in the Tempe and Scottsdale community.

The Arizona Capital Times reported that Steve May issued a written statement last Monday about the termination of his campaign. His statement didn't give specific reasons for the withdrawal, but wrote that he was not personally ready to hold office once again.

Breathalyzer Machines Coming Soon to Valley Bars

We reported in a blog post last March that some local bars are taking initiatives to prevent drunk driving by displaying a machine that tests a person's alcohol content. Now, ABC News reports that several more bars in the Valley are choosing to install breathalyzer machines in their establishment and that a Scottsdale company is trying to make these machines a popular item.

Steve May Being Honest About DUI in Election

At this point, there's not much of a secret when it comes to state House of Representative candidate Steve May's DUI. The Arizona Republic reports that the man was convicted of driving under the influence in June 2009 and was sentenced to 10 days in jail along with three years of probation.

As a former state legislator for the Republican party, Steve May is now running for a House seat in District 17, the district representing Tempe and south Scottsdale. He is challenging incumbent Ed Ableser for the house seat.

Tempe Police Crackdown on Underage Drinking

Underage drinking in the city of Tempe doesn't seem to be too uncommon in the college town known for its party scene. Yet the Arizona Republic reports that the Tempe Police Department and Arizona State University Police Department have recently taken new measures to crack down on people under the age of 21 that are consuming alcohol.

One approach that officers took to enforce the state's underage drinking laws was a crackdown on Tempe apartment complexes that are generally considered student housing. From August 20 to September 4, officers with the two departments targeted 13 apartment complexes and busted people at these complexes for underage alcohol consumption. This operation was part of Tempe's "Back to School" campaign.

1,000 Arrests for DUI in AZ Over Labor Day Holiday

Just how effective was the National Impaired Driving Crackdown campaign? The Arizona Republic reports that the national 17-day campaign to enforce drunk driving laws from August 20 through September 6 certainly had an effect on the state of Arizona. The Arizona Republic reports that the state's DUI task force arrested more than 1,700 people on suspicion of driving under the influence during this period.

Nikolai Khabibulin Plans to File Appeal in DUI Case

Edmonton Oilers goalie Nikolai Khabibulin hit media headlines last February when he was arrested on suspicion of extreme DUI in Scottsdale. Yet the hockey player's name is now being thrown around once again since he was sentenced to 30 days in jail over the incident last week.

The Toronto Sun reports that a Scottsdale judge also sentenced Nikolai Khabibulin to complete an alcohol-education program and pay fines of more than $1,500 in addition to spending 30 days behind bars. But will the hockey player follow through with this sentence?

AZ DUI Checkpoints on Labor Day Weekend

It's time to celebrate the end of summer this Labor Day weekend. But before you decide to drive after chugging beers and sipping cocktails, you should be aware that law enforcers throughout the state will be on the lookout for drunk drivers with AZ DUI checkpoints and saturation patrols.

The Arizona Republic reports that the Pinal County Regional DUI Task Force will be conducting patrols starting at 6:00 p.m. on Friday and will continue until Monday. The Phoenix News Times reported that various Phoenix metro law enforcement agencies will be conducting their Annual Labor Day Weekend DUI Task Force this weekend.

Surprise Police Search For People With Outstanding DUI Warrants

People with DUI warrants in the town of Surprise may want to be on the lookout for law enforcers when they're in their homes this week. According to ABC News, the Surprise Police Department and the Arizona Department of Public Safety are conducting a search for surprise residents with outstanding DUI warrants.

The search began yesterday and will continue until the weekend, where authorities are visiting the homes and businesses of those with outstanding warrants for driving under the influence charges. As of Tuesday, there were more than 300 DUI warrants in the town of Surprise.

Arizona Sees Decrease in DUI Fatality Rate

The Arizona Republic reports that about 300 people are killed each year by drunk drivers in the Grand Canyon state. This may seem like a large number, but this number has gone down quite significantly in the past decade and might continue to dwindle in future years. Why the dramatic decrease in DUI deaths? Members of the non-profit organization Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) believe that the decrease comes from the changing attitudes on drunk driving and the campaigns to crack down on drunk drivers.