The Los Angeles DUI Law Blog

January 2011 Archives

Future Cars May Not Let People Drive Drunk

Can a car determine if a driver is drunk? According to ABC News, modern technology in cars will soon be able to detect if a person is drunk by having breath analyzers built into the steering wheel that can sense alcohol on a driver's breath. Touch sensors will also apparently be on the car's starter button that can detect alcohol levels in a person's skin.

This new car system might just be the answer to eliminating drunk drivers on the roadways. The U.S. government and automakers say that there's hope of one day having these anti-drunk driving devices installed in every car. However, there are of course some concerns with this type of car system.

Ex-Anaheim Angel Adam Kennedy Arrested For DUI

Adam Kennedy might be a star on the baseball field, but his athletic abilities won't put him above the law in California when it comes to drunk driving and traffic violations. The Daily Pilot reports that the former second baseman for the Anaheim Angels was arrested in Newport Beach on suspicion of DUI this week after a breath test revealed that he was driving just above the legal limit of .08 percent.

California Highway Patrol officers initially pulled over Kennedy, who now plays for the Seattle Mariners, on the 73 tollway near MacArthur Boulevard for a basic traffic violation. After CHP officers suspected that the driver was impaired, Kennedy was booked at the Men's Central Jail in Santa Ana and then released from jail on Thursday morning after posting bail.

Huntington Beach Teens May Have Died From Four Loko Overdose

The coroner's office has not released an official cause of what killed 15-year old Aaron Saenz and 16-year-old Chelsea Taylor, but police say that there is evidence that alcohol and drug abuse led to their deaths. KTLA News reported that the two teenagers were found dead last week inside of a vacant apartment in Huntington Beach.

Police officers say that they found an empty can of Four Loko in the apartment as well as other indications of a possible drug and/or alcohol use. Yet this is not the first case where Four Loko is the suspected cause of death.

Drunk Driver Falls Asleep on Pacoima Train Tracks

A man who police suspect was driving under the influence could have killed himself when he stopped his car on railroad tracks last week in Pacoima. KTLA News reported that the driver fell asleep at the wheel, which caused his car to collide with a moving freight train at the intersection of Branford Street and San Fernando Road.

The driver was treated for just minor injuries after the freight train accident, but the man will face some legal trouble because he was arrested on suspicion of DUI after failing field sobriety tests and booked at the Van Nuys Jail. Investigators said that the car was clipped by the freight train, spun around and pushed into a railroad crossing arm. Luckily, there was no damage reported to the train.

Los Angeles DUI Checkpoint on January 21, 2011

The Los Angeles Police Department is planning to enforce drunk driving laws through a DUI checkpoint tonight, so it would be a good idea for L.A. drivers to avoid driving while impaired. According to an LAPD press release, the checkpoint is scheduled for the following time and location.

At the DUI checkpoint, officers will be checking for signs of alcohol and drug impairments. Field sobriety tests will be administered to the motorists that are suspected of driving under the influence. The Los Angeles police officers will also check drivers for proper licensing at the DUI checkpoint.

City of Huntington Beach Won't Post DUI Suspects on Facebook

The Huntington Beach City Council turned down a proposal on January 18 that if approved, would have posted the names of suspected drunk drivers on the Huntington Beach police department's Facebook page. According to the Orange County Register, each council member may have had a different reason for turning down the proposed policy.

One council member reportedly said at Tuesday's meeting that posting the names of DUI suspects on Facebook would harm the city's image. Other members of City Council stated that such a policy would embarrass the families of the DUI suspect and do little to deter drunk driving in the city.

Cyclists Arrested For Bicycle DUI in South LA

A person can be arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence for operating almost any type of vehicle, including a bicycle. The Associated Press reported that five bicycle riders, all between the ages of 18 and 22, were arrested on Thursday while California Highway Patrol officers were investigating an accident.

One cyclist was reportedly in a crash with a motor vehicle in the Baldwin Hills, which led 15 more people on bicycles to check up on the accident victim. CHP officers said that the people on bikes were riding on both sides of the street, not wearing helmets, and barely visible to other vehicles on the road. When the CHP officers smelled the odor of alcohol among the group of bicyclists, authorities conducted field sobriety tests.

Los Angeles DUI Checkpoint on 1/15/11

Police have scheduled at least one Los Angeles DUI checkpoint over this upcoming three-day weekend, so drivers in the Harbor Division of the city should be sure to keep their eyes out for law enforcers cracking down on drunk drivers. It has been announced that the sobriety checkpoint will be at the following time and location:

Man Arrested For DUI After Driving Through Tom's Burgers

A 35-year-old man crashed his car into a plate-glass window of Tom's Burgers in North Hollywood last week. Needless to say, there was a lot of damage that resulted from the accident.

Los Angeles Daily News reported that officers with the Los Angeles Police Department identified the driver as Geoffrey Hathaway of North Hollywood. Authorities suspect that Hathaway was under the influence of an aerosol-delivered substance at the time of the crash through the fast-food restaurant on N. Cahuenga Boulevard. The motorist was seriously injured after the accident and had to be transported to the hospital for treatment.

Number of DUI Arrests Decrease in Los Angeles County

It’s common for DUI arrests and drunk driving crimes to spike during the holiday season. However, The Santa Clarita Valley Signal reports that DUI arrests over the New Year’s holiday weekend significantly decreased this year in Los Angeles County and in the state of California.

California Highway Patrol records show that 228 people in Los Angeles County were arrested between 6:00 p.m. on December 31, 2010 and 11:59 p.m. on January 2, 2011. This is down from 264 DUI arrests during the same time period last year. Across the state of California, authorities arrested 961 drunk drivers during this year’s New Year’s holiday, which is less than the 1,388 people that were arrested for DUI-related crimes during the same period a year ago.

Jaime Pressly Becomes Latest Celebrity DUI Suspect

Jaime Pressly, an actress on the television series My Name is Earl, can be added to the long list of celebrities that have been arrested for driving under the influence. E! Online reports that Pressly was arrested on suspicion on DUI on the night of January 5 after committing a traffic violation in Santa Monica. After failing field sobriety tests, authorities put the actress in jail.

Pressly currently remains free on $15,000 bail, but her legal troubles are far from over because she'll have to answer to DUI charges in court on February 7. Some people are questioning why Pressly's bail was set to the high amount of $15,000. E! Online reported that most DUI suspects post only $5,000 bail after such an offense.

Lindsay Lohan Out of Rehab, But Still Facing Legal Trouble

Actress Lindsay Lohan was able to check out of the Betty Ford clinic in Rancho Mirage yesterday after serving a court-ordered 90-day stint for violating the terms of her DUI probation. Yet the celebrity won't be taken off probation stemming from her 2007 DUI case unless a Los Angeles judge approves of terminating her probation early. KTLA News reports that Lindsay Lohan is supposed to stay on supervised probation until February 25.

Lindsay Lohan must now stay sober, drug-free, and out of trouble with the law so that she can get off of probation this year. If she violates the terms of her probation again, she can face more jail time or more time in rehab.

Do DUI Checkpoints in L.A Target Undocumented Immigrants?

The Los Angeles Police Department and Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department conducts drivers license and sobriety checkpoints throughout the year, including many checkpoints around the holiday season. Advocate groups for undocumented immigrants say that law enforcement agencies conduct checkpoints so that they can legally seize thousands of cars from illegal immigrants. However, ABC News reports that the sheriff's department has denied such claims and says that checkpoints have the purpose of preventing drunk driving accidents.