The Phoenix DUI Law Blog

August 2011 Archives

Drugged Driving in AZ: Why It's Difficult to Get DUI Convictions

Arizona residents, like drivers in every state, have had an increasing number of problems with driving under the influence of drugs, or drugged driving, over the past several years. Yet, many are still unaware that drugged driving in Arizona could lead to serious consequences, much less that it is illegal even if they have a prescription for the drug.

Complicating the rampant use of drugs while driving are the difficulties law enforcement faces when trying to get DUI convictions after the driver is caught, reports azfamily.com.

National DUI Crackdown Nets Drunk Police Officer in Tucson

The Tucson Police Department caught one of their own early Saturday morning after joining a national DUI crackdown coordinated by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), reports the Associated Press.

Two-year TPD veteran Stacey Morrison-Wheeler was allegedly caught driving impaired when she rear-ended another vehicle and injured three people while off-duty at 3:00 a.m. Saturday morning. Officers stated that the 35-year-old seemed to be impaired, and she was later placed into custody.

San Tan Valley Man, Woman Arrested for Unrelated Aggravated DUIs

It's hard to say which is the stupider crime: driving drunk while your young niece is in the vehicle, or rear-ending a police vehicle while intoxicated?

Regardless of which needs a higher degree of stupidity, two residents of the San Tan Valley, Michelle Yazzie and Dylan Fann each found out that either could get you an aggravated DUI after committing those actions last week, reports azfamily.com.

Bath Salt High Gets Mayer Woman Drunk Driving Arrest

Although alcohol is typically involved in a drunk driving arrest, drivers can be apprehended for driving under the influence of any drug, including strangely legal ones like "bath salts."

A Mayer woman, Lynette Scarry, found that out the hard way after she was arrested for a DUI while allegedly on a bath salt high, reports azfamily.com.

The term "bath salts" is typically associated with minerals used to perfume and soften bathwater. However, the bath salts drug users inject and snort are synthetic stimulants sold in powder form that have been likened to "imitation cocaine." They do, however, come with street names straight out of a Bed, Bath and Beyond catalogue, such as Blue Silk, Pure Ivory, Ocean Burst, and Vanilla Sky.

Loop 101 Crash Kills 3: Drunk Driving Suspected

Three people were killed in a fiery car crash on the Loop 101 after their car burst into flames, reports The Arizona Republic. Police suspect that the deaths are related to drunk driving.

The fatal accident occurred in west Phoenix near the Indian School exit around 1:30 a.m. According to Captain Steve Harrison of the Department of Public Safety, the driver of a Hyundai car rear-ended a Chevrolet SUV hard enough to cause it to roll over.

The vehicle's fuel tank ruptured, which caused the car to burst into flames and kill the three people trapped inside. One of the occupants of the Hyundai was transported to a local hospital with a broken arm. There have been no reports on the condition of the occupant.

Berry Williams Guilty of Murder in Phoenix DUI Crash

More than a year after an Arizona State University student was killed in a DUI crash, Berry Williams was convicted of first-degree murder, reports KTAR News Radio.

Williams was also convicted of unlawful flight from law enforcement, endangerment and shoplifting. At minimum, he faces 25-years to life in prison due to the murder charge.

Jeffrey Hendershott Arrested for Drunk Driving, Again?

Jeffrey Hendershott cannot stay away from the wrong side of the law.

The son of infamous former Maricopa County Chief Deputy David Hendershott is becoming infamous himself after he was arrested for suspected drunk driving for the the second time in two weeks, reports azfamily.com.

Hendershott could face a felony charge of aggravated DUI given his previous arrest for driving under the influence. According to the Arizona Department of Public Safety, repeat DUI offenders may also receive alternative punishments, such as automobile impoundment, the installation of ignition interlock devices, electronically monitored house arrest, and intensive probation supervision with treatment.

Raul Rentiera Rivera Repeatedly Resists Arrest, Receives Aggravated DUI

Raul Rentiera Rivera repeatedly resisted arrest while reportedly driving under the influence - try to say that five times fast. According to Phoenix authorities, the rambunctious Rivera was arrested for an aggravated DUI and resisting arrest Sunday night, reports ABC 15 News.

Suspected DUI drivers can face an aggravated DUI felony for several reasons; one of which includes driving with a suspended, canceled, revoked, or refused license while intoxicated. According to Phoenix police, officers later determined that Rivera’s driver’s license had already been suspended.

Florence Mom Delfina Gaitan Arrested for Aggravated DUI, Child in Car

Delfina Gaitan won't be winning any mother-of-the-year awards any time soon; the 35-year-old Florence mom was arrested for aggravated DUI Thursday morning while her nine-year-old daughter lay asleep and unbuckled in the backseat of the car, reports The Arizona Republic.

Gaitan failed several field sobriety tests and reportedly had a blood-alcohol content of .235, almost three times the state legal limit of .08, authorities said. She also had bloodshot and watery eyes, as well as slurred speech - all tell-tale signs of intoxication.

City of El Mirage: Underage Drinking and Driving Suspect Hits House

A teenage boy, who is suspected of underage drinking and driving, crashed his car into a house in the city of El Mirage early Wednesday, The Arizona Republic reports.

The youth, who has remained unidentified due to his age, reportedly sideswiped his four-door passenger car into the garage of the house and injured his passenger, according to authorities. Police say the boy had been drinking.

The house’s garage sustained significant damage, and the teen also hit a tree and some shrubbery before continuing down the street.

Omar Flores-Moreno's Violent Flight Gets Him Aggravated DUI and More

One thing was certain Sunday morning -- documented gang member Omar Flores-Moreno did not want to be taken in by the police after fleeing the scene of a residential robbery.

Instead, Flores-Moreno allegedly did everything in his power to evade officers, including trying to mow down an officer with his car, nearly driving head-on into a police vehicle, fighting off a police dog, and fighting the effects of being tased several times - all while, unsurprisingly, under the effects of an illegal substance, reports ABC 15 News.

Flores-Moreno's high-speed chase through city streets led to charges of aggravated assault on a police officer, felony flight, aggravated DUI and resisting arrest, said authorities.

Jeffrey Hendershott Arrested after Suspected DUI Crash

Apparently, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree - Jeffrey Hendershott, son of disgraced former Maricopa County Chief Deputy David Hendershott, was arrested last Tuesday on charges stemming from a suspected DUI crash in north Phoenix, reports The Arizona Republic.

Phoenix police allege the 29-year-old ran a red light, struck another vehicle with his yellow Hummer H2, and fled the scene. Fortunately, no one was injured.

Under Arizona law, drivers are required to stop their vehicles in the event of an automobile accident and exchange information with those involved. Failing to stop after an accident that involves damage to a vehicle is a class 2 misdemeanor and can result in the suspension of the perpetrator’s driver’s license.