Feature: FPU student arrested after drinking and driving

by  Jessica Wolfe

Disclaimer: To protect this person’s privacy, his name has been changed 

Anthony Bishop woke up when his car hit the curb, crashed into a fence, and sideswiped a telephone pole. 

Earlier that night, Bishop went to a party at Franklin Pierce University. A friend bought him a one-liter bottle of Fleischmann’s vodka, which Bishop mixed with Gatorade. He started to play drinking games, and although he doesn’t remember much after that he consumed nearly half the bottle. 

Drunk, Bishop collapsed on a couch. “I passed out for 30 minutes, but I thought I slept for 4 to 6 hours,” he said. “I didn’t feel great, but thought I was just hungover and decided to drive home.” 

Bishop had trouble staying awake once he was in the car. “I remember driving down the highway. I would pass out, then wake up,” he said. “I thought I was really tired and needed to just wake up. I opened the windows and just told myself to stay awake.” 

Near the center of Jaffrey, Bishop passed out again. “I don’t remember hitting the pole,” he said. “I didn’t understand what had happened.” 

(Photo: Google Images)

He tried to keep driving, but his car died and he couldn’t restart it. “I got out and saw twisted metal and spilled oil. A woman came out and asked if I was alright. She asked how old I was, I said I was 19. She asked if I was drunk, I said yes.” 

The police arrived and conducted a sobriety test, which Bishop failed. Bishop remembers he was read his rights and the police told him to put his hands behind his back. “Cuffs are cold, and they are tight, and they are uncomfortable as hell,” he said. “If you rub against them, they cut into you.” 

At the police station, Bishop submitted to a breathalyzer test. His BAC was .16, which was double the legal limit for adults and only .02 points away from an aggravated DUI. He used his phone call to call his mother, who drove an hour to pick him up and pay his bail of $1,000. 

Bishop’s parents were relieved he wasn’t hurt and hadn’t injured anybody else. Bishop said, “where my parents didn’t punish me, the justice system did.” He had to pay a $500 fine, go through counselling to regain his driver’s license, attend a rehabilitation workshop, and have an Intoxalock installed in his car for one year. An Intoxalock is a breathalyzer device hardwired to a car’s ignition; in order for the car to start, the driver must pass the test. It also retests the driver at random while driving. 

“I warn all my friends against drinking and driving,” Bishop says. “I’ll snatch keys out of friends’ hands if I think they are too drunk to drive. I don’t ever want something like what I went through to happen to somebody else.” 

 

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