FULLERTON (CBSLA.com) — Fullerton residents whose lives have been devastated by drunken drivers attended Tuesday’s City Council meeting to demand that officials reinstate DUI checkpoints.
The reaction comes one week after the City Council voted down a $50,000 grant to continue funding DUI checkpoints, citing that it was a violation of civil liberties.
The council was addressed by the sole survivor of a DUI crash that shocked Orange County. In April 2009, Jon Wilhite’s skull was torn from his spine when a drunken driver ran a redlight. The crash claimed the lives of Wilhite’s friends: Angels pitcher Nick Adenhart, Courtney Stewart and Henry Pearson.
“If you don’t allow these checkpoints to exist, the blood’s on your hands,” Wilhite said.
“Every checkpoint, on average, takes as long as going through a red light. I mean, if we can’t wait that long then I don’t know what’s wrong with us,” Wilhite’s brother, Chad, told the council.
Some residents argued that checkpoints pad police paychecks.
“We’re sick and tired of paying overtime to cops that just stand there and do nothing,” one man said.
Still, residents insisted DUI checkpoints save lives, especially since there are 260 active liquor licenses in the city of Fullerton.
The council delayed resolving the issue until a meeting on Sept. 18.