A former Fort Collins, Colorado city council man that had served in Afghanistan found himself pleading guilty to drunken driving. This individual testified at court that he suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). He claimed PTSD may have been affecting him the evening that he was charged with a DUI.
Apparently, he was the head of a company where soldiers accidentally killed four children. He states that his experience is motivating him to speak to veterans that may be suffering from similar trauma as well. “It’s just made my life hell. You blame yourself,” he stated to the court. He claims to suffer from nightmares, and he has a service dog that will be present to help wake him up from nightmares.
His arrest seems also to have consequences upon his life. Following his arrest, he resigned from his job as a county clerk. He’s also been seen by two separate psychiatrists since his arrest. This individual and his attorney stated that the Veteran’s Administration (VA) to provide him with the help for his condition.
For attorneys defending individuals charged with DUI, it’s about more than determining what the blood alcohol level was of the individual arrested or demonstrating that the arrest was improper. Individuals arrested are often dealing with other personal matters that have sometimes gotten beyond their control. It can also mean making the case to the court that there are other ways to deal with the arrest than throwing the individual charged in jail.
As the above individual was a first-time offender, he was sentenced to spending 25 days of detention at his home. It was at his home that he could remain with his service dog that provided him with some psychological comfort.
Source: Coloradoan, “Former Fort Collins councilman convicted of drunken driving urges fellow vets to get help for PTSD,” by Trevor Hughes, April 4, 2013
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