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Drunken driver sentenced for killing cyclist(12 posts)

Drunken driver sentenced for killing cyclistkenyee
Oct 17, 2002 11:12 AM
http://www2.bostonherald.com/news/local_regional/drun10172002.htm

Ban alcohol. It's obvious that it makes people kill :-P

2 years until sentencing?filtersweep
Oct 17, 2002 11:47 AM
That isn't exactly swift justice.

I wonder what the actual time served will be? 18 months?

I always have mixed feelings about these situations. It is odd how killing a cyclist is more of a crime if alcohol is involved (vs. the sober driver with the "I didn't see him" defense). A sober driver can draw NO TIME... and it is conceivable that it won't even be treated as a crime.
Ban stupid people, will be much more effective...Spunout
Oct 17, 2002 11:55 AM
A few years ago, a cop was drunk, hit and killed a kid on a bike. Said he thought it was a deer. Got off scott free.

For the next month, every cyclist in Ottawa had furry deer horns on their helmet. Very sad injustice. Some have to pay.

Unfortunately, they guy in that story will be out in two years, drink and kill again.
But who gets to decide who's stupid? :-)kenyee
Oct 17, 2002 12:23 PM
That is a sad story. Cops always seem to get off easy (we've had quite a few incidents here where they had clear firearms violations and domestic battery and the story was quietly buried)-:

The ban alcohol thing was for those who want to ban things (cars, SUVs, firearms) instead of smacking down irresponsible people for being irresponsible...

p.s., for filtersweep, yes, justice takes that long in the Boston area as in most cities, I suspect. The court system is seriously backlogged with the revolving door policy we have in our prisons...
If you think about it, most penalties for moving violations...Gregory Taylor
Oct 17, 2002 12:34 PM
...in an automobile hardly do justice to the potential mayhem that they are designed to address. Yes, a sweeping generality, but there is some truth to it, I think. For example, I got hit by a car this summer when a kid pulled out in front of me from a side street. Result: one ticket for failure to yield the right of way, $75. The little schmuck nearly killed me, and all he got was a $75 ticket. What really floored me was that, during his very short driving career (he was 17) the dude already had a prior ticket for speeding.

If I were suddenly elevated to the position of traffic czar, I'd help clear up the incredible traffic problem that we have here in DC by yanking licenses from people for most moving violations. Yup. And this is coming from a guy who owns an MG and a V-8 Mustang convertible and loves cars. Simply put, it has gotten too crowded to pussy-foot around with bad or irresponsible drivers. If it were my rules, blow a stop sign or red light and lose your license for a year. Hey, you could have killed someone! Fifteen over the speed limit? Sit down. Drive drunk? Don't even think about getting a license back. Harsh and draconian? Yes. But driving a car is a privilege -- a privilege accorded to those who show enough skill and responsiblity to be trusted with 3,000 lbs of potentially deadly force -- and we should start treating it as such.
If you think about it, most penalties for moving violations...harry hall
Oct 17, 2002 1:17 PM
Bravo from one who believes in treating drunk, speeding, or inattentive drivers like a king--a Rodney King!!!!!!
Gregory Taylor is 100% correct..unfortunately car-crazy...Djudd
Oct 17, 2002 1:49 PM
culture won't have it. This is why you see folks driving unsafe cars, speeding through lights and stop signs and cops say nothing. Everyone feels everybody has right to drive. In fact not too many people have the skills to guide a two ton missle safely at speed. The wonder is not more pedestrians and cyclists are killed.
I call a driver's license a "license to kill"Tig
Oct 17, 2002 2:18 PM
Because some people think they can do anything they want to others while hidden safely behind steel and glass.
You're right, it is a privilege to drive, not a right.
Draconian law enforcement; I love it!DougSloan
Oct 17, 2002 3:00 PM
To be really effective, treat the car as an instrumentality of a crime, like they do with drug busts, and impound or even seize the car used in drunk driving; losing a little piece of paper (license) is one thing; losing a $40,000 car might get people's attention! Real simple. You drive drunk and get caught, your car is impounded until trial; you lose, the car is auctioned off and funds used for law enforcement or victims' compensation funds.

Hmm. I guess all the drunks would just drive cheap cars, huh?

Doug
Funny, I had a similar thought on the way home...Gregory Taylor
Oct 17, 2002 3:38 PM
You could make the use of an automobile during the commission of a felony a separate offense, punishable by loss of license and forfeiture of the auto.

Actually, I'd bet that you could impound the car as evidence if you had a really agressive prosecutor/police chief. You have a rather unique and self contained "crime scene" -- empties in the back seat, anyone? Well, that all has to be preserved for trial....
Draconian law enforcement; I love it!filtersweep
Oct 17, 2002 3:53 PM
Hate to bring it up AGAIN, but in many European countries they seize the license for any accident while they investigate it. Keep in mind a license can run around $2000US.

Most people don't outright OWN a $40,000 car, BTW. By the time they properly OWN it, it is worth a fraction of its new value, but I won't quibble. I'm guessing your proposal would be a NIGHTMARE for financing- interest rates would sky rocket or you would need an additional VERY COSTLY form of financing insurance... but only I would think such things.

The police reportedly seize and auction vehicles used in soliciting prostitutes in one of the municipalities around here. I don't know all the details (such as using a borrowed car, or a car titled in a (god forbid) spouses name.

It really doesn't help that most moving violations are not treated as "criminal" offenses. I'm not saying that they should, but it only encourages scofflaws. Add the psychology of how truly RANDOM it is to be ticketed for a non-accident moving violation (such as speeding), and you begin to see the problem: it is only "illegal" if you get caught.
Draconian law enforcement; I love it!moabbiker
Oct 17, 2002 5:15 PM
Seizing the car would only make the whole population pay for it through higher interest rates, bank fees, etc. Few people own the average 25K car. Those who own a car probably have significantly diminished value on it due to mileage or age. The best way to punish these fools is to impose stiff fines and permanent lifetime license suspension. In this situation I am just shocked the losers license will only be suspended for 10 years. That's just ridiculous.