Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Killed by a Drunk Driver

Today's Houston Chronicle reports on a fatal accident involving a serial drunk driver.

By Cindy Horswell

A Mexican national, charged with intoxicated manslaughter and failure to render aid in the deaths of a Porter woman and her pregnant daughter, had three prior drunken driving convictions...

According to investigators, Gomez-Gutierrez was speeding on the Eastex Freeway about 3:40 p.m. Sunday when his pickup truck slammed into the back of a 1998 Buick belonging to the Ortiz family. The two women were killed on impact near the entrance to Kingwood, investigators said.

Authorities say Gomez-Gutierrez fled the accident scene on foot but was captured further down the road after being hit by another car. He was not seriously injured....

Kahan said, "Part of the blame for this accident should be placed on the criminal justice system which punted, passed and kicked Gomez-Gutierrez out of jail, so that he could do what he does best -- drive drunk."
I am not going to comment on the fact that a Mexican National had been arrested and jailed three different times without being forced to leave the United States.

I did not pick this article to point out the failures of our justice system or question the light sentences that this drunk had received previously.

I am not even going to mention that the Houston District Attorney should be doing more to keep repeat criminals off of the streets and less daemonizing of law abiding gun owners.

Nope, I am not going to talk about any of that.

I mention the above article so I can comment on this other piece of news that is being reported today.

From WBAP, News Talk Radio 820:

AUSTIN-(WBAP)-A bill named after two fallen metroplex police officers has passed the Texas House of Representatives. The Darren Medlin and Dwayne Freeto Act increases penalties for drunk drivers who assault or kill peace officers, firefighters or EMS personnel while they are in the line of duty. The Act is named after Grapevine police officer Darren Medlin, who was hit and killed by a drunk driver in 2004, and Fort Worth Police Officer Dwayne Freeto, killed when his car was engulfed in flames after being hit by a drunk driver last December.

The legislation now goes before the Texas Senate.
Will someone please explain to me why the death of a police officer, firefighter or an EMS in this situation is worth more than the death of the two women in the first article?

I can understand increased penalties for killing or attempting to kill a police officer attempting to arrest a goblin. Legislation such as that may help to protect our police officers. This is different. A drunk who kills in a traffic incident is not killing a police officer because he or she wears a badge, the drunk kills them because they are where they are. The drunk would have killed anyone who happened to be in that same spot.

Do you want to increase penalties for intoxicated manslaughter? Go ahead, but increase them across the board. The three generations that were killed by the Mexican National, deserve the same justice as a public servant killed under the same circumstances.


the pistolero said...

Because, of course, they're "The Only Ones." In more ways than one.

Anonymous said...

Hello from Austin.

First time reader of your blog. I happened upon it during a search on a related topic.

I am really enjoying reading your posts and plan on coming back for more.

Thanks for a great blog!

John R said...

Hello Austin, thanks for stopping by.