Monday, July 21, 2014

When DUIs Converge

Heather Leupold, age 27,  arrested by Hadley PD last night Rt9/Rt116 intersection near Amherst town line

So if my weekly reports of drunk drivers arrested by Amherst Police all over our little town is not depressing enough for you, consider this past weekend Pelham and Hadley police also arrested impaired drivers who were only moments away from crossing the town line into Amherst.

 Seth Alison arrested by Pelham police for DUI on Saturday

Kind of like that level three sex offender arrested at Puffer's Pond earlier this month:  He was not one of our 24 registered sex offenders, as he lives in Southampton. 

And you wonder why I'm a fan of additional police officers (and firefighter/EMTs).


Amber Theriault stands before Judge Payne

Meanwhile, Judge Payne accepted a standard 24D plea deal (only available to 1st time offenders) this morning in Eastern Hampshire District Court from Amber Theriault, age 22, arrested by APD back in  mid-May for DUI in town center.

She was observed taking a really w-i-d-e turn onto Triangle Street from North Pleasant and when pulled over had all the common attributes:  smell of liquor, glassy eyes, slurred speech.  She also lost her balance when performing the Field Sobriety Test.

Ms. Theriault will lose her license for 45 days, pay $600 up front in fines and another $65/month for a year while on probation.  If she has no further incidents over the course of the year the DUI is dismissed. 

When asked by Judge Payne where she had her last drink she replied, "Stacker's Pub" in the heart of downtown Amherst.  And considering her breath test back at APD headquarters was .18% -- more than twice the legal limit -- she was pretty drunk when served that "last drink."

Stacker's Pub, 57 North Pleasant Street (building owned by Jamie Cherewatti)


Walter Graff said...

Just proves Amherst is as dangerous during the school year as it is when all the entitled brats go home.

As for Stackers, do you think it their fault that she was driving intoxicated? Maybe she carried herself far better when she left the bar than she did when she got to the car. Maybe she told the bartender she had a ride. Or maybe the bartender simply didn't cut her off when he should have. Still her doing, her responsibility in the end.

Maybe the Amherst police need to convene a meeting with all bartenders in town and offer them advice and training as to what to look for in customers and what the potential liability for that bartender could be. Not familiar with MA policy on this - does a bartender actually get any training or do we assume they know how to handle drunks because everyone does.

Sort of like when a 13 year old boy reads from the Haftorah and is suddenly deemed a man.

I'd think some good community police work and proacting could go a long way to helping alleviate this problem.

Anonymous said...

Bartenders should have Serv-Safe or TIPS training when they work in a bar; it is good for several years before it needs to be renewed. It only costs $50 to take the class and exam, and it is worth the time and money.
And Walter, while you are right that it is her responsibility that she know how much she is consuming and to stop *before* she's drunk, it is also the bartenders responsibility to make sure that they aren't over-serving any one, as it the bartender who is liable if something happens later on.

Walter Graff said...

It should be mandatory for all bartenders to take a course and be certified. Folks who over drink you can't do much about, it's often bigger than the booze that is the issue. It just doesn't seem like with all we've done over the years, we've really done much more than punish after the fact. And by then it's often too late.

Anonymous said...

Am I the only one noticing that the defendants (particularly the young ladies) look a lot older than their actual ages?

Forget their 40's, anyone wanna guess what they are going to look like when they are in their 30's?