In an unusual case out of Alaska, a bus driver was recently charged with aDUI. The driver was transporting people to their cruise ship when passengers reported he was driving erratically. In addition to the drunk driving charge, the man now faces a reckless endangerment charge for each of his passengers, 46 in all.
State troopers said they received calls from several passengers indicating the driver was drunk and driving recklessly. Before the troopers could track down the bus, they received more calls indicating the driver had pulled over and was now walking down the highway. When authorities caught up to the defendant, his blood alcohol test indicated his level was .341, well above the limit for that state.
The owner of the bus-line admitted the driver was recently hired, but said he passed a drug and alcohol test before he was employed. During his short employment period, a spokesperson for the company said they had no indication of a problem. He arrived sober at 4 am that morning. Another driver said he pulled out behind him earlier and he seemed to operate the bus correctly. The spokesperson added that this type of behavior was an anomaly. Drivers know their jobs depend on providing safe transport. It's highly unusual that an employee would jeopardize his or her job.
There's no doubt more details will emerge in this bizarre case. Shortly after his arrest, the defendant lost his job and, depending on his past history, could face jail time and/or high fines. DUI charges can bring serious penalties that can change a person's life for many years.
Emotions run high in situations like these where lives were put at stake. It's difficult for the court of public opinion to consider the surrounding circumstances. Why was this man drinking? Why did he pull over and start walking? Is he struggling with an addiction or disorder? A skilled DUI defense attorney will ask those questions and act as an advocate for a defendant even when his case seems like it has already been decided.
If you have been charged with DUI, the Law Office of Nicolai Cocis can help. Our office is located near the Southwest Justice Center in Murrieta, California. We represent individuals charged with criminal offenses, DUI and juvenile matters in the Temecula, Murrieta, Lake Elsinore, Hemet, Corona and Riverside areas. Contact us for a free consultation.