Carly Rousso speaks about drugs and fatal crash

Carly Rousso looks at a portrait of 5-year-old Jaclyn Santos-Sacramento while speaking to a youth group. (Anthony Souffle, Chicago Tribune)

Carly Rousso looks at a portrait of 5-year-old Jaclyn Santos-Sacramento while speaking to a youth group. (Anthony Souffle, Chicago Tribune)

This weekend will mark the two year anniversary of the fatal DUI “huffing” incident that took the life of five year old Jaclyn Santos-Sacramento.

I am going to link to a Chicago Tribune story that has a video of Carly Rousso speaking to teenagers about her history of drug abuse, the fatal crash, and her thoughts of suicide in the immediate aftermath of that crash.  I am unable to embed it here, but I strongly urge that you click over to it and watch it.  It is only a few minutes.

“Bloodiest” guitarist charged in fatal DUI crash

seanrileyFrom a report by Rummana Hussain for the Chicago Sun-Times:

A guitarist for popular local band Bloodiest was ordered held in lieu of $200,000 bail Tuesday for allegedly running over and killing a pedestrian while driving drunk.

Six hours after Sean Patrick Riley hit 55-year-old Jose Serrano in the 2700 block of North Avenue Sunday night, his blood alcohol level measured at .161 — twice the state’s legal .08 limit, Cook County prosecutors said.

Riley initially refused to take a field sobriety test a half-hour after the 8:24 p.m. accident, according to a police report.

But he submitted to a Breathalyzer around 3:30 a.m., the report said.

When an officer asked Riley if he had been drinking that night, Riley allegedly said, “I’ve had a few.”

An off-duty Chicago Police officer who was driving eastbound on North Avenue saw Riley hit Serrano with his truck while Serrano was in the crosswalk, walking southbound on the street, Assistant State’s Attorney Glen Runk said.

Riley, who also was driving eastbound on North Avenue, didn’t appear to apply the brakes of his car or swerve out of the way of Serrano as he traveled 40 miles per hour, Runk said.

Riley, 33, pulled over on Talman Avenue in a “dazed physical state” and was seen walking toward Serrano, who was lying on the street, the police report said.

When officers arrived, they smelled alcohol on Riley’s breath, Runk said.

Riley, who has a driver’s license from Montana, also allegedly was slurring his speech and had bloodshot eyes.

He had no insurance when he was behind the wheel, Runk said.

Serrano, of the 2100 block of west 52nd Street, suffered a broken leg, broken foot, broken arm and died from massive head trauma, Runk said…

Bloodiest describes itself on Facebook as “scaring the goofy sunglasses and mustaches right off of the hipsters. The singer is possessed. Guitars. F— yeah.”

The band was a runner-up for best metal band in The Reader’s “Best of Chicago” issue last year.

Former Bull Ronnie Brewer pleads no contest to CA DUI

From the Chicago Tribune:

Former Bulls forward Ronnie Brewer pleaded no contest on Tuesday to a misdemeanor charge of driving under the influence of alcohol stemming from his February arrest in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles prosecutors said.

Brewer, 29, entered his plea through an attorney during a hearing in Los Angeles Superior Court, Deputy District Attorney Stephen Miyata said, admitting that his blood-alcohol concentration on that night was .15 percent.

A Los Angeles Superior Court judge sentenced Brewer to three years summary probation and ordered him to attend three months of alcohol abuse classes and 10 Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, Miyata said.

A no contest plea is the legal equivalent of pleading guilty under California law.

Denver Broncos’ Prater suspended for four games for DUI

From CBS Denver:

Broncos placekicker Matt Prater apologized on Monday for a DUI and a drinking violation that resulted in a four-game suspension to start the NFL season.

“I am really sorry,” Prater said. “I have made mistakes and I hope to gain everyone’s trust back and I am going to work my tail off to try and help us win a championship this year. I take full responsibility for what’s happened and I’m accountable for it.”

Greenwood Village police arrested Prater on Aug. 12, 2011, and charged him with driving under the influence and leaving the scene of an accident. That landed him in the league’s substance abuse program, which Prater violated by drinking beer on vacation this summer.

The league aimed for a one-year suspension, but Prater and his attorney sought a deal to keep it at four games. The kicker is in an alcohol-treatment program.

Prater said the suspension — and the resulting cloud hanging over him — has affected him this preseason.

“It definitely has. Like last game, I obviously didn’t have my best game,” he said. “It’s been on my mind. You’re waiting for it to come out and then when it does come out it obviously affected my performance. Now I am glad it’s over with and hopefully get past it and continue to have success here.”

He said he vowed not to drink again as long as he’s in the substance abuse program.

Bills DT Alan Branch arrested for DUI 14 hours before gametime


It didn’t take long for Le’Veon Bell to be outdone.  Bell, as you might remember from my previous blog post, is the Steeler running back who was busted for DUI-cannabis on his way to the team plane for the following day’s preseason game. 

Bills defensive tackle Alan Branch was busted for DUI 14 hours before his preseason game.  With a BAC of 0.14.  He is now an ex-Bill.

From the Niagara Gazette:

 CHEEKTOWAGA — Buffalo Bills defensive tackle Alan Branch has been arrested for drunken driving.

State police say Branch was arrested at about 2 a.m. Saturday in the town of Cheektowaga after officers noticed Branch vomiting out the driver’s side door of his vehicle.

Police say Branch failed a field sobriety test and had a blood-alcohol content of .14 percent. The legal limit is .08 percent. He was charged with driving while intoxicated and released. He’s due back in court on Aug. 29. It wasn’t clear if he had a lawyer.

Branch did not play in Saturday’s preseason game against the Buccaneers.


Steelers’ Le’Veon Bell learns you can get a DUI if you are high


If you have been reading my blog regularly, you know that you can get charged with a DUI in Illinois for driving under the influence of cannabis, or even for having any marijuana in your blood, breath or urine — regardless of how long ago you used it or whether you are still high.

Apparently Le’Veon Bell of the Pittsburgh Steelers doesn’t read my blog.

According to

Bell and [fellow Steeler LeGarrette] Blount were pulled over in Ross Township 24 hours prior to taking the field, and were formally charged with marijuana-related charges before the game.

Police said an officer was traveling north on McKnight Road Wednesday when he smelled the odor of marijuana coming from a black Camaro.  The car was pulled over in the Pool City parking lot.

Bell was driving the car and Blount, 27, was in the front passenger seat, police said.  Mercedes Dollson, 21, of California, was in the back seat, Channel 11’s Alan Jennings reported. 

The players and Dollson admitted to possessing a small- to medium-sized bag of marijuana that was found in the glove compartment, police said.
“All three individuals were polite and cooperative with the police investigation,” police said.

According to the criminal complaint, Bell told the officer at the scene: “I didn’t know you could get a DUI for being high. I smoked two hours ago. I’m not high anymore. I’m perfectly fine. Why would I be getting high if I had to make it to my game?”

The complaint said the officer then asked Bell what game he was referring to. Bell answered, “I have to be on a plane at 3 to be in Philadelphia. I play for Steelers.”


Justin Bieber plea: DUI reduced to careless driving, pleads guilty to resisting arrest

It was fortunate for Justin Bieber that his DUI arrest occurred in Florida and not Illinois; Florida requires that a motorist be impaired due to consumption of marijuana in order to be found guilty whereas Illinois only requires the presence of cannabis in one’s blood, breath or urine.  This made all the difference for Bieber, because while there was evidence that he had consumed marijuana, there was insufficient proof that his consumption actually impaired his driving.  As a result, his attorneys were able to obtain for him a plea deal that resulted in reduction of the charges from DUI to careless driving.  He also plead guilty to resisting arrest.

From ABC news:

Justin Bieber’s lawyers have agreed to a plea deal in his Miami DUI case from January.

The singer, 20, who was booked seven months ago on charges of driving under the influence, driving with an expired license and resisting arrest without violence, must attend 12 hours of anger management classes, pay a $500 fine, complete a YouImpact program in which he’ll meet people whose lives were changed by drunk drivers, and pay court costs.

In return, his lawyers agreed he’d plead guilty to resisting arrest without violence. The DUI charge was reduced to “careless driving,” to which Bieber also pleaded guilty. His charge of driving with an expired license was dropped, and he now has a valid driver’s license…

Bieber reached another plea deal last month in his misdemeanor vandalism case stemming from an egging incident back in January. According to that plea deal, Bieber was ordered to serve two years probation, perform five days of community service and pay more than $80,000 in fines.

He also has to take a separate anger-management course.