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Local Teens Seriously Injured in DUI Wreck

There was a serious accident in Dawson County last week and two teens were critically injured. The single vehicle accident took place on Couch Road in the eastern part of the county. According to reports, Kayla Gourlay, 18, is facing two counts of serious injury by vehicle and a single count of driving under the influence. The teenager has also been charged with seatbelt violations, failure to maintain lane, reckless driving and purchasing/possession/manufacturing/distribution of a controlled substance - marijuana. Georgia State Patrol details state that Gourlay was airlifted after the accident and taken to a trauma center in Atlanta. The teen...

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Man Arrested for DUI Twice in 20 Hours

It would seem that being arrested once for driving under the influence would be enough to deter anyone from committing the crime again. It is no surprise, then, that many people were shocked to hear of a Dalton man being arrested twice within a 20 hour period for drinking and driving. According to reports, Robert Wayne Ruggles, 57, was arrested last Wednesday morning. He was charged with driving under the influence after backing into another vehicle as he was pulling out of his apartment complex. He was then arrested on Wednesday evening and again charged with DUI. This time, he was...

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Former Model Arrested for DUI

Stephanie Seymour, 47, was arrested for driving under the influence last week in Connecticut. The former model was arrested after backing her black Land Rover into a Mercedes. According to reports, the responding officer smelled a strong odor of alcohol emanating from Seymour’s mouth while she was answering questions. He had to ask her multiple times to produce her license, registration and proof of insurance. He reported that she fumbled through her purse to find the documents before producing them. He also made note that Seymour had bloodshot eyes and was unsteady on her feet when exiting her vehicle. Seymour refused to...

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Man Asks for Leniency in DUI Charge

A man in Laramie County asked a judge to sentence him to probation for his felony driving under the influence of alcohol conviction. Paul Lucero had worked out acceptance into a residential treatment program and wanted to put his life in order. He told the judge that he was done playing games and ready to make life changes. Unfortunately for Lucero, he had already made a plea agreement that included a sentence of between three and five years in prison. By making the request and violating the terms of his agreement, Lucero made things worse for himself. The district attorney decided that...

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Voice Actor Arrested for DUI

You may not know the actors who voice your favorite cartoon characters, but you definitely know the characters. To say that Squidward was arrested for DUI may not be factual, but the man that brings his voice to life certainly was. Rodger Bumpass, the voice of the popular character from “SpongeBob SquarePants,” was arrested in Burbank, California on charges of driving under the influence. According to reports, Bumpass was arrested just before 11 p.m. last Friday night. The officers saw Bumpass leaning against his vehicle that was stopped in the middle of the roadway. As officers approached, Bumpass attempted to walk away...

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NTSB Proposes Lower BAC Legal Limit

The National Transportation Safety Board wants to make changes to DUI laws in the country. The first change may be decreasing the legal driving limit to just a single drink. That would lower the legal limit to 0.05 percent — or even lower. It also wants to outlaw cellphone use while driving, period. The agency released a statement that said, in part, “When it comes to alcohol use, we know that impairment begins before a person’s BAC reaches 0.08 percent, the current legal limit in the United States. In fact, by the time it reaches that level, the risk of a...

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Insurance Companies Using Tech to Determine Rates

Changes in technology could soon mean that your insurance premiums are altered. For years, insurance companies have solely relied on the fact that you haven’t received a traffic ticket or been involved in an accident to determine your low rate. Today, companies are able to install devices on your car that give a detailed picture of exactly how safe you drive. So far, enrollment in these data-tracking programs is voluntary. Progressive has a program called “Snapshot” and Liberty Mutual will be launching “RightTrack.” Drivers who enroll in these optional programs are often given an automatic discount on their premiums along with...

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Woman Left Dangling After Driving Drunk

A driver in Atlanta was arrested on a driving under the influence charge after her car was discovered dangling from an upper level in a Buckhead parking garage. According to reports, the incident occurred last Thursday night near Morosgo Drive. Officials say that Madison Merritt was trying to stop another vehicle in front of her. She was unable to do so and sped her vehicle in order to catch up. Instead of making the turn to go up the next level in the garage, Merritt went straight, crashing into a guard cable and heading over the edge of the deck. When...

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Kentucky Expanding “Look-Back” Period

Habitual drunk drivers are about to have a more difficult time in Kentucky. The state has just passed a bill that will allow officers and judges to look back even farther into a driver’s history. Currently in Kentucky, the past five years are considered when sentencing a person for driving under the influence. This “look-back” period can hurt you dearly if you have been convicted multiple times for the same offense. Now, instead of looking back at just five years, people can check back up to 10 years. This can mean harsher penalties than ever before for people convicted of multiple...

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Scarlet Letter Tag Law Proposed in Mississippi

If a Mississippi legislator has his way, the Scarlet Letter Tag Bill will soon be made into law. The goal is to punish repeat DUI offenders in hopes of deterring them from committing the crime yet again. Studies have shown that similar laws already in effect in other states do very little to reduce the number of deaths caused by DUI crashes. Gary Chism has proposed the law which would apply to second-time DUI offenders. If convicted, a second-time offender would be required to install yellow license plates with red printing onto their vehicles. These plates serve as a beacon to...

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