Sober man gets arrested for DUI in Arizona

Return To Article
Add a comment
  • dawgdeelux saratoga springs, UT
    June 14, 2013 10:15 p.m.

    Profiling is alive and well and it occurs everywhere.

  • brightness Taylorsville, UT
    June 14, 2013 2:39 p.m.

    Looks like the decision to arrest was made based on the skin color, but I hope this is not the case.

  • Emiliano Zapata East Los Angeles, CA
    June 10, 2013 11:28 p.m.

    DUI is about exploiting the Public. Its about money. The police are out there to get away with whatever they can. In the end it just a focused approach to law enforcement designed to Hit the working and able to pay crowd for whatever they can get away with.The real criminals are not deterred by any of this. Again only the working and able to pay really care about paying for a lawyer, getting the car out of the impound, attending the Driver Education Classes, not driving during the period of the license suspension and then paying for an interlock device for years at a time. I should know. I did it. I paid the lawyer, paid for the car, paid for 3 years of driver education, had my license revoked, my license reinstated. Yet after paying for all of this now I am forever designated a criminal with deserving no respect or honor. After all is said and done, I have spent over $50,000.00 for a DUI. Money is the reason for all this. A real criminal would not do any of this or care if he ran somebody over.

  • Maudine SLC, UT
    June 10, 2013 10:28 p.m.

    According to other news sources, the initial police report indicates that he passed the field sobriety test but was taken in for the breathalyzer anyway - and when he passed that, they did a blood test - and when he passed that, they called in the drug recognition expert - who wrote inhis official report that there was no indication or evidence of substance use - but in spite of all this, he was not only arrested, but was actually charged with DUI. It was not until he started raising a fuss that the charges were dropped.

    And the amount he is suing for is being reported as $500,000 in other sources.

    @Twardy: According to AZ law, vehicles are impounded if you are arrested for extreme or aggravated DUI - which is BAC over .08%. It is impossible to arrest someone for that prior to them being tested for that - all they can be arrested for is DUI which does not include vehicle impoundment. Additionally, licenses are not suspended for DUI until you are found guilty.

  • MoJules Florissant, MO
    June 10, 2013 9:48 p.m.

    My deceased husband had a disease called Friedrichs Ataxia, he was diagnosed at the age of 15, one night he had helped to decorate for the high school prom in a very small town. He got pulled over for speeding, because he was tired, his gait was more extreme in poor balance. The officer was doing a sobriety test and my husband was in tears telling him he had a disease, he didn't believe him. My father in law was bishop at the time and the police chief was in the ward, he informed the chief of the poor treatment, and the policeman was no longer on the job. I actually feel bad for my husband and this officer, I don't think either were treated fairly.

  • Twardy Folsom, CA
    June 10, 2013 9:29 p.m.

    Arrest is automatic because of #1,2 and 3. Per Arizona laws the car is impounded and license suspended automatically upon arrest. So yes, the same happens every time. That's why PD should pay for the costs. I can't speak for the DUI class because I have no clue about that.

  • Moderate Salt Lake City, UT
    June 10, 2013 9:22 p.m.

    Twardy claims:
    5. No alcohol, so drug expert comes and clears him.
    6. Released.
    If guy was white same thing would happen.

    Sounds harmless when you leave out:
    5a. Arrested
    5b. Car impounded
    5c. License suspended
    5d. Told to take a DUI class
    Still think the same thing would happen "If guy was white"?

  • Twardy Folsom, CA
    June 10, 2013 8:37 p.m.

    1. Crossed white line while driving at night
    2. Bloodshot eyes (from swimming)
    3. Failed field sobriety test (bad knees and hip)
    4. Cop cuffs him and takes him for breath test.
    5. No alcohol, so drug expert comes and clears him.
    6. Released.

    If guy was white same thing would happen. Every drunk has an excuse for failing the field test. This cop probably heard 1000 times about bad knees and hips...whatever. Still, PD should pay for all costs associated with their mistake. Not 50k thou. The only reason guy says its racism because the cop who pulled him over was white.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    June 10, 2013 8:22 p.m.

    A lot of times people are targeted, or treated differently, not just because of their color, but their ability to fight what is being claimed they did. Call it DWB, but it could as easily be driving while poor, or driving while hispanic. Its a relatively well documented. It is more about the defendants ability to fight back and protect themselves. And on the back side of these cases what you find is DAs that love to plea out these cases, because they know the defendants don't have the resources to fully pursue all their legal options.

    Its a big warp in the system that needs to be addressed.

  • crunchem Cedar City, Utah
    June 10, 2013 6:47 p.m.

    the white line is the one designated to be crossed over. it's the yellow line you don't cross, if it's solid. so what was the prob;em, again?

  • kargirl Sacramento, CA
    June 10, 2013 6:38 p.m.

    I thought of all the things that happened that shouldn't have, what added insult to injury--and was totally disgraceful--was that in spite of passing the sobriety test, he was handcuffed and made to sit on the curb, at age 64 with a hip replacement due in two days. I'm 66, no replacements, but the aches and pains of age and some seizures make themselves known, and can just imagine how uncomfortable this man must have felt, and how much that night cost him in discomfort. Docs don't replace joints unless there is a clear need. I hope this gentleman wins his lawsuit, at least to pay for what this needless charge has cost him, and that Surprise has learned not to charge innocent people any more.

  • ParkCityAggie Park City, Ut
    June 10, 2013 6:08 p.m.

    Surprise indeed! Uhh why did they have to take this poor man to the police station to give him a breathalyzer test, don't police officers usually have those on hand? I guess they thought it would save them some money just to have one in the back of officer Rubble's office. Bad.

  • ConservativeCommonTater West Valley City, UT
    June 10, 2013 5:03 p.m.

    Last week there was a similar story about a black truck driver with a bad leg that had the same .000 BAC that was arrested and jailed for 17 days in Box Elder County even though he passed the sobriety tests He was never charged. He was stopped by UHP.

    Maybe these guys should have been charged with DWB-driving while black.

  • county mom Monroe, UT
    June 10, 2013 4:56 p.m.

    THE MTN MAN, I sure hope you never ever wander out of your lane of traffic, if you believe crossing the white line is always ticket worthy.
    It was said he crossed over out of his lane so the officer pulled him over.
    They did not say he was swerving all over the road. Erratic driving is an other can of worms and we see it all the time from those on the phone and texting.
    I happen to have raised a houseful of children and am truly grateful for carseats.
    I can not imagine the kind of erratic driving I would have done with my children crawling around the car and fighting. I don't know how my mother did it.
    It was bad enough having them throw things at each other across the car. I don't think there would be any mothers driving at all if crossing the white line occasionally was a federal offense.

  • Blunderbuss Silver City, NM
    June 10, 2013 4:28 p.m.

    Police are generally getting out of control. Even here, in Podunk, NM, the police have an armored car. It is time they remembered that they are merely overpaid public servants, and not hired to bully the public at their leisure.

    As for the FSI? Lots of people would fail it. This is why most civilized nations do not use it. I would almost certainly fail because of a hearing problem in my right ear that interferes with the sort of equilibrium required to pass these idiot tests. And race? Don't know... He may well be right about that... After all, look at the nut running Arizona these days.

  • THE MTN MAN Taylorsville, UT
    June 10, 2013 4:24 p.m.

    The problem with drunk driving is that it causes ERRATIC driving. The drunkenness alone is not the problem. People posting on this board seem to be implying that it's okay to drive erratically as long as you're not drunk. Before we just "send him on his way" there should be some investigation as to why he couldn't stay in his lane. That's a serious problem, whether he was DUI or not.

  • Riverton Cougar Riverton, UT
    June 10, 2013 4:03 p.m.

    It is ridiculous to give someone a DUI when tests show that he is obviously sober. That is blatantly wrong. If he was doing something wrong, then punish him accord to his deeds.

    That being said, other comments on this article have it right; there is not enough detail to come to any conclusions about him being targeted by police. My cousin gets pulled over a lot, but I don't think the police are after him necessarily (although some corrupt police departments might see that a driver has traffic school or a ticket previously and nail that driver so the city gets more revenue).

  • SWP Provo, UT
    June 10, 2013 3:58 p.m.


    Actually, it is kind of inappropriate to have fun while driving. If you're friend is waving her hands all over and everyone's singing a loud song, you're certainly not paying as much attention to the road as you would be if all of that weren't happening.

    There's way too much distracted driving, talking, texting, singing,'s dangerous. It puts everyone on the road at risk.

  • I know it. I Live it. I Love it. Salt Lake City, UT
    June 10, 2013 3:16 p.m.

    Uncle Rico,

    I actually agree with Chris B to a point...

    As we age our mental and physical motor functions decay, for many it is severe and with growing health problems due to the growing trend of certain lifestyles, this decay will only be likely to increase.

    I have had loved ones who I love dearly. I didn't want them driving at all. As selfish as it is, it had nothing to do with protecting everyone else (that was just a plus that made sense), but protecting my loved ones. I didn't want them hurt.

    I don't think we should throw the book at people for mistakes that are much more ignorant or naive than a petty crime. I simply think we should be alert and pro-active about who drives and under what conditions/influences, etc. I'm sure Chris B's main point had more to do with that principle. I would hope we all agree on that part. How swift and severe punishments are I understand disagreement, but solving problems ought to be everyone's priority.

  • amazondoc USA, TN
    June 10, 2013 3:01 p.m.

    DWB is well known here in the south. I does not surprise me one bit that a small AZ town might have the same sorts of cops.

    I hope he gets his settlement, and then some. Sometimes the only way to make bigots change is to force them to change.

    And Chris -- even if he *did* cross the white line, that should only have earned him a simple ticket. Not $5,000 worth of trouble, getting his car impounded, being handcuffed and taken to the police station, and so on. That is waaaay beyond acceptable.

    I've been stopped for suspicion of DUI twice. I wasn't, either time -- both times I was just tired, driving very late at night on nearly empty roads. (Once was in SLC, incidentally.) If I had been black, I can easily envision that my treatment would have been much worse than it was.

  • John C. C. Payson, UT
    June 10, 2013 2:59 p.m.

    Driving after midnight back to Fort Leonard Wood I felt a bit drowsy. I exited the freeway and pulled into an empty lot for a nap. Waking up to a bright light and a torrent of accusatory questions from a police officer, I did my best to explain. He said my slurred speech was of evidence of intoxication. For just a moment I felt what it was like to be an innocent suspect--powerless and afraid. Then the moment passed. You see, I was white and had the I.D. of an Army officer. A different color and a different occupation and I might have learned how hard life really is in this prejudiced society for the rest of us.

  • county mom Monroe, UT
    June 10, 2013 2:52 p.m.

    I understand the officers concern, when he crossed the white line.
    Drinking and driving is one of the biggest killers on our roadways.
    However once he passed the test and explained himself, I don't understand why he was not allowed to go on his way?

  • Stink Bug Billingsley, AL
    June 10, 2013 2:44 p.m.

    The problem is not the man's race or DUI. The problem is that the police departments around the country are being run as para-military operations, not local law enforcement. Don't know who they are bulking up for, didn't know we had a pending invasion but seeing it in every state. DOJ is passing out armored vehicles and tanks to the local police and I guess they are getting a big thrill being bullies these days. Look up the woman who was beaten at the police booking counter (while in cuffs), the woman that was shot to death at a Cosco (sample lady, had a knife and scissors) in Washington state last week in a fully crowded store, it goes on and on. They keep the 'Cops' show on to desensitize everyone to their new role. We, the public, have eaten it up for years. Getting pretty scary.

    June 10, 2013 2:43 p.m.

    He said he has been pulled over 10 times in Sunrise, it would be nice to know if that is within 2 years or 20 years or? If it is 10 times in only a few years then it seems like he MIGHT have a good case of DWB (still need to know all the circumstances).

    I'm white and at most I've been pulled over once every five years driving about 20,000 miles a year.

  • Uncle Rico Sandy, UT
    June 10, 2013 1:24 p.m.

    Unless your a minority somewhere, you have zero clue of how this feels, only maybe what it looks like. Although I detest lawsuits, he should sue.

    @Chris B

    Sir, after seeing your ridiculous ongoing sports post, I wonder if anyone takes you seriously.... seriously.

  • Mrlee Alamosa, CO
    June 10, 2013 1:09 p.m.

    I don't know if this was a racially motivated situation as I cannot speak for the officers involved. I can say that they clearly screwed up and they clearly need to pay for their mistakes. They seemingly, purposely told the guy he was DUI even after he explained his red eyes and bad hip. Then the test was negative and a drug expert says he never would have arrested him. Make them pay but if it was not a racial issue please don't make it one now.
    There is just too much hate in the world as it is.

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    June 10, 2013 1:06 p.m.

    If he was driving erratically(which at least from the article is not entirely being disputed) then he deserves a ticket and should be pulled over.

    I don't care what the cause of his driving erratically was, if he wasn't safe, he deserves what he got.

  • SLars Provo, UT
    June 10, 2013 1:02 p.m.

    Happens all the times in small towns. Impossibile to prove racism with these facts.

  • mecr Bountiful, UT
    June 10, 2013 12:59 p.m.

    Serve and Protect? I don't think so. Not serving neither protecting.

    This is happening too often. I was pulled over once because my friends were doing the YMCA with her hands with the radio playing that song. The officer asked me if I was drinking. None of us were drinking. In fact, we don't drink. The only thing that officer could smell was chanel #5, lancome, tommy girl and bath & body fragances. `He didn't ask me to take any test or walk the line but I did wonder if it was inappropiate to have fun when driving.

    I am going to make sure to put some visine in my eyes next time I leave the pool and go driving!

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    June 10, 2013 12:24 p.m.

    I think there are a lot of people driving today who would fail a field sobriety test for one reason or another. This is because, essentially, they are impaired. Be it physically, mentally or emotionally, there are a lot of people out there who would never think of drinking and driving but are not capable of operating a motor vehicle as if they're sober. I'm not saying that was the case here, but it is a double standard.