The Daily Press on March 12, 2010, posted an AP article titled “Tenn. Man Stopped for Suspected DUI for 10th Time, Tells Police, ‘Do What You Gotta Do’” to the Weird News section of its Web site.
Ha hah ha. Right?
Clicking over to the fuller local report of this shocking incident published by the Kingsport, Tennessee (TN), Times-News reveals that the 57-year-old man was driving his Ford Bronco as slowly as 20 mph on Interstate 26. When police officers signaled the drunk driver to pull over, he “weaved from the outside lane of traffic into the emergency lane and continued on ‘for a short distance.'” When the man did stop, he did not put his SUV into park, and it rolled backward until an officer was able to shift the transmission.
The man was too drunk to know which state he was driving in; he told officers he believed he was in nearby southwest Virginia (VA). How the drunk driver did not crash and injure or kill himself or drivers and passengers in other cars and trucks is a small miracle. As the tragic DUI accident that claimed the life of a 16-year-old Kempsville High School varsity baseball pitcher last weekend showed, it takes only one poor decision to drive after drinking too much alcohol or doing drugs to kill.
The Tennessee man has made the potentially deadly choice to drive drunk who knows how many times. He has been cited for DUI 10 times, but statistics show that most people who drive drunk do so without being caught, even when those people cause accidents. Since drunk and drugged drivers kill or injure thousands each year, judges should seize any opportunity to take a person arrested for multiple DUI violations off the road for good. The 10-time loser in Tennessee had already had his license revoked, but jail seems the only way to protect the public from him.