Wrong-Way, Intoxicated Drivers Endanger Dallas Drivers

Wrong-way, intoxicated driving plagued the roads of North Texas last week, leading to a series of arrests and at least one death. When drivers, especially drunk drivers, start heading the wrong way on busy streets and highways, the risk for danger quickly heightens. To defend yourself from getting hurt in these situations, police suggest that you watch far ahead and look for other drivers braking, swerving, and avoiding the left lane–wrong-way drivers can mistakenly believe that they’re on a two-lane highway. Driving cautiously can help prevent another driver’s mistake from hurting you.

23-year-old Julia Crain Brooks was arrested late Tuesday night in Irving after colliding with an oncoming police car while driving in the wrong direction on state Highway 161. After receiving reports of a woman driving southbound in the northbound lanes, officers were dispatched to the area, where they made several attempts to get Brooks’ attention. Despite this, she never stopped.

Police report that Brooks continued driving the wrong way on the highway and nearly crashed into several cars, approaching speeds of 80 mph. During the pursuit, officers deployed spike strips and shined a spotlight into Brooks’ car, but she still refused to stop. Brooks kept driving until an officer traveling northbound used a blocking maneuver and intentionally struck her car as she passed by him. This tactic pushed her vehicle into the highway median. Brooks and the officer were both uninjured.

Brooks was determined to be intoxicated, and when asked why she didn’t stop, she slurred her words and told officers that she did not want to go back to rehab. She was taken into custody on charges of evading arrest with a vehicle and driving while intoxicated. She was expected to be arraigned before a judge on Wednesday afternoon. After the arraignment, an affidavit with more details on the pursuit is expected to be released. Brooks is the third person to be arrested in a seven-day period for driving the wrong way on a North Texas Interstate.

Earlier, on the same day as Brooks’ arrest, Dallas drivers alerted authorities about a pickup truck heading the wrong way on Interstate 30 near Dolphin Road. The driver crashed into the HOV wall at Carroll Avenue, barely missing other drivers in his path. He was not hurt, but admitted to drinking “a couple beers” before getting behind the wheel.

The week before both of these incidents, 35-year-old Sidney Pineda caused a fatal wreck on Central Expressway when he was driving in the wrong direction early in the morning. He faces intoxication manslaughter charges for the crash, which killed 51-year-old Jose Portillo, a baker who was on his way to work at the time of the collision.

Driving under the influence is a dangerous and destructive behavior, and any charge for a DUI or DWI is a gravely serious matter. Should you or anyone you know be facing drunk driving charges in Dallas, whether it’s a first or repeat offense, you need to have the best-trained legal staff to help you present your case to the judge and jury. Make a call to The Wilder Firm today to find an attorney who can best prepare your defense. The attorneys at The Wilder Firm have a reputation for success and are ready to help you take action in your DUI/DWI case.

Sources:

Kendra Lyn and Frank Heinz. “ Officer Intentionally Crashes Into Wrong Way Driver.” NBCDFW.

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