#JusticeinPimaCounty: Week 48
Yesterday, at the state Capitol, I attended the launch of a statewide holiday DUI Task Force (pictured), coordinated by the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety (GOHS), along with several law enforcement officials, including DPS Director Heston Silbert and Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone, and, of course, Governor Ducey. It was an important message we gathered to deliver, and one I feel can’t be repeated enough. This week’s review includes many of the comments I made.
We have asked so much of our first responders out on our streets and in our communities across Arizona the past 20 months, even more than we usually do. My sense of things is that society at-large is suffering chronically from anxiety from the pandemic and the state of the world. And this leads to fragility and vulnerability and, at times, poor behavior on our streets and on our roads. Our first responders are constantly there, and they deserve our gratitude.
December becomes such an important month for prevention, and the increased visibility of our first responders during this time reminds us to exercise good judgment and to not drink and drive. And their increased visibility provides relief to the community that our roads are going to stay safe even during the holidays.
PCAO’s Vehicular Unit has also held the line during such a difficult year. Our vehicular prosecutors respond to crash scenes in real time to assess the wreckage and carnage for themselves, in order to build the strongest case possible when criminal charges are warranted. In 2021, there is no excuse for any of us to drink and drive. You can Uber, you can Lyft, you can mass-transit on a bus or streetcar or light rail. You can and should have a designated driver before you ever start drinking. You can walk, you can stay home.
When you’re out at the bars and restaurants over the holidays and someone’s about to make the bad decision to drive after drinking, you have to have that awkward and difficult conversation. You have to take the keys. If you love them, don’t let them drive. Be safe and be well.
To be continued,