Massachusetts DUI charges have been lodged against a one-time “Principle of the Year,” who is at the helm of a middle school.
The arrest has made national news, and the accused has been placed on administrative leave by the superintendent at Dedham.
She was reportedly stopped by police one weekend night in early April and accused of driving impaired. She had not been involved in a DUI accident and there were no injuries reported. It appears though authorities may have stopped her just in time. An off-duty officer in Weston alleged he spotted the suspect driving “all over the road” along Interstate 95. He said he watched as she nearly crashed her vehicle four different times. He followed her and called 911.
When she pulled off the highway and into a parking lot, she was met with marked police cruisers. Officers asked flat-out whether she’d had anything to drink, and she responded by conceding she’d consumed three alcoholic beverages containing vodka. She agreed to undergo a voluntary field sobriety test, which she allegedly failed (the officer indicated in his report that she could barely stand up on her own), and a breathalyzer test result indicated she had a blood-alcohol level of 0.19.
She was subsequently arrested and later released on her own personal recognizance.
The principal had been named “Principal of the Year” by the Massachusetts Secondary School Administrators Association last year. Many parents have spoken out in favor of the principal, offering their words of support. Many expressed sentiments such as:
- “I don’t think that someone’s life should be ruined for just one mistake.”
- “I don’t condone drinking and driving, but many of us have made mistakes over the years.”
- “It’s an unfortunate incident, and I’m just here to show my support.”
Here’s the problem our Boston DUI injury lawyers have with these kind of assertions. First of all: It’s true that someone’s life shouldn’t be totally ruined for one mistake. We agree. That’s why we represent the families of those who have lost loved ones whose lives were stolen because someone else made “just one mistake.” Secondly, while it’s also true that all of us make bad decisions sometimes, too often, the bad decision to get behind the wheel of a car intoxicated forever alters the lives of innocent people for the worst.
Drunk driving accident victims become maimed, paralyzed, disabled or dead. That didn’t happen here. Based on the evidence in the police report, that’s sheer luck.
And what’s more, as Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) has noted, by the time a person is arrested for their first DUI, they’ve driven behind the wheel drunk on at least 80 prior occasions.
Of course, this is not to say that all drunk drivers are bad people. This case is one of many that proves that assertion wrong. But that does not mean we can allow them to sidestep accountability. Treating drunk driving as some harmless mistake or minor indiscretion belies that enormity of the consequences.
That’s why our DUI accident lawyers have committed our careers to fighting for justice for victims.
If you or someone you love has been injured a Boston drunk driving accident, call for a free and confidential appointment at (617) 777-7777.
Middle School Principle on Leave After OUI Arrest, April 6, 2016, By Michael Rosenfield and Tim Jones, NECN.com
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Report: Drunk Driving Crash at Daytona International Speedway, April 9, 2016, Boston DUI Accident Lawyer Blog