Wife Drives Drunk to Help With Husband’s DUI, Gets One of Her Own

Good judgment. It’s not distributed evenly across the human race, and we have alcohol to make it even worse.

impaired judgment leads to drunk drivingCase in point: James Quintana was stopped for drunk driving outside a Pojoaque, New Mexico sports bar. A bar employee, watching his customer being questioned by the police, decided to call Quintana’s wife to alert her.

So far so good. Quintana’s wife, Cherity Roybal-Vigil, arrived shortly to calm the waters. Unfortunately, it wasn’t water that the police officer smelled on her breath. Roybal-Vigil failed the backwards counting test, and a subsequent breath test revealed her blood alcohol concentration to be .15, almost twice the legal limit for drunkenness. Worse, she had her 12-year-old son with her in the car.

If Roybal-Vigil had exercised good judgment and stayed home, she would not have her very own DUI, and her competence as a parent would not have been called into question.

But it’s the curious nature of alcohol that it diminishes the very faculty that one needs to make good decisions about drinking it. Which is why both husband and wife went to jail.

Fortunately, New Mexico has a law requiring mandatory ignition interlocks for all DUI offenders. An ignition interlock, or car breathalyzer, prevents a vehicle from starting if the driver has been drinking.Chances are that both drivers will be required to install the interlock.

This is worth noting because if an interlock device is installed on their vehicles, they will not go through this again – for as long as the interlock is on the their vehicles. James won’t get out of the bar parking lot, and Cherity won’t make it out of her driveway. Their vehicles just won’t start.

That means that an ignition interlock is like eyeglasses or a hearing aid – a piece of technology that fixes a faculty (judgment) when it’s failing.

By the way, Cherity told the policeman that her mother was on the way. Let’s hope that she, at least, had some good judgment and didn’t drink while driving.