By Thao Nguyen
Students, staff and faculty met with Dallas County Community College District Police Department officers at Brookhaven College to learn how they keep the campus safe. Over a cup of coffee, attendees learned about drinking and driving as well as how to stay safe during the holiday season. The event, Coffee With a Cop, was held in the S Building lobby Oct.15 and Oct.17.
Vikki Ethington, campus police officer, said during the holiday season there is always an increase in drunk driving and alcohol misuse. Ethington said that since she started working at Brookhaven, there have not been any drunk driving incidents. However, she has seen intoxicated people get off the bus.
Ethington said the police department has to perform its public function in which they interact with students, staff and faculty on campus and provide information that will help them stay safe.
The state uses blood alcohol concentration, or BAC, to determine if a driver is alert enough to operate a vehicle. Having an open alcohol container can result in a class C misdemeanor, according to dui.drivinglaws.org. The violation is penalized with a maximum $500 fine. An arrest made for an open container and driving while intoxicated will warrant a class B misdemeanor and will result in a minimum six days in jail, according to dmv.org.
David Beideck, police officer, said: “It is just a bad idea to even attempt driving while you know you’re drinking. It’s not only for your safety, but also for other people.” Beideck said there are more drunk driving incidents during the holiday season because people go out with friends. People need to be more aware while they drive during this time of the year.
Beideck said: “If you know you’re going to drink, then just Uber. It will be a lot safer for you and everyone else.”
Beideck also said crimes involving theft increase during the holidays because people tend to shop more and usually carry valuable items with them. “If you have something then take it with you or put it in the trunk,” he said. “Also double-check if your car is locked and try not to stay out too late.”