The Phoenix DUI Law Blog

November 2011 Archives

Agencies Unveil New Vehicles to Kick Off Holiday DUI Crackdown

If you thought the increased enforcement against Thanksgiving DUIs over the weekend was rough, get ready for even more enforcement over the upcoming holidays by authorities with shiny, new toys. State and local officials are gearing up for Arizona’s holiday DUI crackdown with $1 million worth of new vehicles to help successfully process impaired drivers, according to Cronkite News.

The six new mobile processing centers, commissioned by the Governor’s Office for Highway Safety, will be used throughout the state in an increased effort to deter drunken drivers. Police departments in Phoenix, Tucson, the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, Scottsdale and the Department of Public Service each received a vehicle.

Southern AZ DUI Task Force Makes 52 Thanksgiving DUI Arrests

Don't say we didn't warn you that Arizona law enforcement would be out in full force over the holidays to nab Thanksgiving drunk drivers.

The Southern Arizona DUI task force was particularly active over the extended weekend, making 52 Thanksgiving DUI arrests, reports the TucsonSentinel.com.

Brother Suspected of Impairment in Wreck that Injured Teen Girl

A teenage girl is facing life-threatening injuries after the car her brother was driving crashed in North Scottsdale, reports azfamily.com. Authorities say that impairment and speed may have been factors in the crash.

The 14-year-old girl is fighting for her life at Phoenix Children’s Hospital, while her 20-year-old brother is recuperating from less serious injuries at Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn. No one else was injured in the one-vehicle crash.

The wreck occurred around 2 a.m. Monday morning. The girl’s brother was driving a Chevy in North Scottsdale when he reportedly lost control of the vehicle and it rolled over.

Avoid a Thanksgiving DUI: Tipsy Tow and Safe Ride Programs

We've warned you about the hidden dangers of Thanksgiving holiday feasting and driving.

And we've warned you about the increased police enforcement on the Arizona interstates during one of the busiest travel days of the year.

But we're not just about the gloom and doom of a potential Thanksgiving DUI. In this post, we offer you alternative methods of transportation to help keep you off the roads and out of the drunk tank.

Let us give thanks for a DUI-free Thanksgiving weekend!

Avoid a Thanksgiving Holiday DUI: DPS Conducts Operation Safe Passage

The holidays are an excellent time for celebrations, but it is also a time when law enforcers are out in full force to make sure your celebrations don't spill out to the roads. The Department of Public Safety has announced that it will increase road safety enforcement on Thanksgiving Eve, one of the busiest travel days of the year, reports ABC15 News.

Dubbed Operation Safe Passage, the increased enforcement includes officers stationed at 10-mile intervals in rural areas and 2-mile intervals in metropolitan areas along the four major Arizona interstates - 8, 10, 17 and 40 - on Wednesday, November 23.

Prescott Driver Kneed Cop in Groin, Faces Super Extreme DUI

If the allegations against Michelle Elise Watson are true, she should be the poster child for what-not-to-do in the event of a DUI arrest. And she has the mug shot for it. Throwing two thumbs up and a beaming smile, the Prescott driver didn’t seem to mind she had just been arrested on several charges, including suspicion of aggravated assault on a peace officer, resisting arrest, and super extreme DUI.

Witnesses called Prescott police after they saw Watson hit a curb and drive on a sidewalk, according to The Daily Courier. However, it’s when police pulled Watson over that things got interesting.

Arizona Has Some of the Worst Drivers in the Nation?

The Grand Canyon State has some of the most notoriously-strict DUI laws in the country, but are its laws so strict because its drivers are so bad? A study by carinsurancecomparison.com claims Arizona drivers are among the worst in the nation.

The findings are reportedly based on data from three sources: the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, the American Motorists Association, and Mothers Against Drunk Driving. Ironically, MADD just awarded Arizona a five-star rating for its DUI enforcement. Only four other states and the District of Columbia were also given the same ranking. Apparently, state law enforcement needs to be strict to combat bad driving.

MADD Gives Arizona DUI Enforcement Five-Star Rating

There are few organizations against drunk driving more widely-known than Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), and there are few states with stricter DUI laws than Arizona. Given the Grand Canyon State’s notorious reputation for strict DUI laws, it’s probably not surprising to hear that MADD recognized Arizona as one of the top DUI enforcement states in the country in its fifth annual report to the nation, reports KTAR.com.

The five-star rating is a rare honor among the fifty states. Only four other states and the District of Columbia received the distinction this year.

Prevent Holiday Feasting from Turning into a Holiday DUI

The holiday season is usually a time of giving, celebrating, and feasting until your pants pop and you are passed out on the bed in a food coma. But the joyous occasion of holiday feasting could lead to a not-very-merry holiday DUI if you aren’t careful.

Hidden Dangers:

The number of calories on your overloaded plate shouldn’t be the only thing you worry about during a holiday feast. The food could contain potential alcohol traps you may not be aware of.

Underage Motorcyclist Arrested for DUI, Speeding 110 MPH

Behind the dashing good looks of 20-year-old Kyle Logan Fahmy allegedly lies a man with the need for speed.

Fahmy was arrested Saturday early evening after he blew through red lights and reached speeds of up to 110 mph on his motorcycle, reports The Daily Courier.

The charges Fahmy now faces include DUI, criminal speed, fleeing a pursuing law enforcement vehicle, four red light violations and driving with suspended license plates.

Man Gets 10 Years for Aggravated DUI, Assault and Drug Charges

A Missouri man who was arrested in June in Yavapai County on charges of aggravated DUI, aggravated assault of a police officer and transportation of a narcotic was sentenced to 10 years in prison last Monday, reports The Daily Courier.

Elijah Hughes II was caught with 3 pounds of marijuana and 2.4 pounds of cocaine when he was pulled over for a traffic stop. Deputies became suspicious after they reportedly noticed Hughes was exhibiting nervous behavior. When they asked to search his car, Hughes allegedly try to flee.

The Worst Consequence of a DUI - Death

Here at The Phoenix DUI Blog, we are always harping on the severe punishments drivers can receive as a first-time DUI offender. The punishments are reflective of Arizona's well-known reputation of having the strictest DUI laws in the nation, and range from the installation of an ignition interlock device, jail sentences, expensive fines, and time spent in Sheriff Joe Arpaio's Tent City. But the worst consequence of all - a DUI fatality - should not be overshadowed.

Although DUI fatalities were down in 2010, more than 200 people died in an alcohol-related traffic fatality last year, according to a report by the Arizona Department of Transportation.

Drowsy Driving Prevention Week: Sleepy Drivers as Bad as Drunk Ones?

Nodding off behind the wheel could be just as bad as downing one-too-many beers beforehand, according to studies. Because driving-while-sleepy isn’t against the law, Arizona companies and organizations are partnering up to educate motorists about the dangerous practice through Drowsy Driving Prevention Week, reports ABC15 News.

“In many ways, driving drowsy is similar to driving drunk. Awareness decreases, reaction time slows, judgment is impaired, and your risk of crashing skyrockets,” said Linda Gorman, director of communications and public affairs for AAA Arizona.

Man Arrested for DUI Crash, Drugged Driving, Blamed it on the Dog

The Prescott police have probably heard everything in the book when it comes to excuses for DUI crashes. Prescott resident James Howland Brenner tried to use the “my-dog-jumped-in-my-lap” excuse after he crashed into a man’s parked car. Police weren’t buying the tale, however, and arrested him on drugged driving charges, reports The Daily Courier.

The victim was reportedly waiting inside his car to pick up his granddaughter when Brenner allegedly crashed into him from behind. Brenner later told arriving officers that he had been trying to get his dog off his lap when he swerved and hit the parked car, according to Lieutenant Andy Reinhardt of the Prescott Police Department.

Tucson Considers Texting Ban to Combat Distracted Driving

Fed up with the state Legislature’s inability to pass a law preventing texting and driving, the city of Tucson is taking the matter into its own hands and could possibly take cell phones out of drivers’ hands soon, reports the Arizona Daily Star.

Tucson City Council members want to discuss the possibility of a texting while driving ban this week. A year ago, Phoenix was the only city in the state that had an outright ban on texting while driving. Since then, other cities have considered implementing bans in their own communities since the Legislature has been unable to approve a statewide ban.

Some members of the Legislature believe that the current laws against dangerous driving adequately cover texting and driving, according to the Daily Star.

Chandler Man Arrested for DUI, Child Endangerment of 3 Children

A Chandler man was caught driving 35 miles over the speed limit while allegedly under the influence with his three young stepchildren in the car, reports The Arizona Republic.

Fabien Garcia-Holguin was allegedly driving 80 mph in a 45 mph zone when he was spotted by a witness who called the police. Authorities eventually arrested the Chandler man at Arizona Avenue and Ray Road.

Garcia-Holguin was reportedly exhibiting typical signs of a person who may be impaired, including slurred speech and bloodshot eyes. Inside the car, police found the Chandler man’s three stepchildren - ages 1, 3 and 7 - in the car with loose car seats and broken seatbelts, according to The Republic.

Gilbert Man Heading to Jail Work-Release Program Arrested for DUI

A Gilbert man on his way to a work-release program from Maricopa County Jail was arrested on suspicion of aggravated DUI, according to The Arizona Republic.

Police pulled over Leighton Bradley Lines for making an illegal right turn and noticed that he was exhibiting the tell-tale signs of impairment: slurred speech, constrict pupils, and delayed reactions, according to a police report.

DUI Suspect Accused of Assaulting Gilbert Police Officers

If the reports are true about DUI suspect Oralia Baltier, she pretty much did everything you shouldn’t do when involved in a DUI investigation.

First, Baltier is accused of fleeing the scene after hitting a vehicle early Tuesday morning, according to The Arizona Republic.

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.

License Plate Photo Implicates DUI Crash Suspect with Hit-and-Run

With instant access to cameras and the Internet right at your hands, it’s getting harder for criminals to get away with their crimes. Take, for instance, 27-year-old Dustin James McCornack. He allegedly fled the scene of a DUI crash Friday, but was later tied to the crime because the victim was able to take a picture of his license plate number, reports The Arizona Republic.

McCornack reportedly rear-ended the victim’s vehicle before he took off but was eventually arrested later that night after he crashed into a light pole. However, it may have taken longer to connect him to the earlier crash if it wasn’t for the victim’s quick-thinking and quick-picture-taking skills.