Colorado Police Worry New Trend Emerging Amongst Drunk Drivers

Spilled Alcoholic Drink and Keys

A possibly drunk driver rear ended a Colorado State Patrol trooper on the morning of September 1 in what police fear may be a new trend.

According to Colorado State Patrol, 46-year-old State Patrol trooper Clinton Stanton was taken to North Suburban Medical Center to be treated for minor injuries. He’s since been released.

The incident happened on Tuesday morning, when Stanton stopped to let a truck driver know that his vehicle’s load was spilling. It was then that 21-year-old Jose Ramirez struck the trooper’s vehicle, which Stanton was in at the time of the collision.

Ramirez ran away after the right wheel of his vehicle came off, but Adam County deputies later took him into custody. He faces several charges including suspicion of DUI, leaving the scene of an accident and failure to yield.

Denver Police said alcohol is suspected to have played a factor in the collision. According to Colorado state law, the fine for a driver’s first DUI is between $300 and $1,000, and up to one year in jail. The second, and third offense warrants a fine up to $1,500, and up to one year in jail. Ramirez now faces potential charges for DUI, failure to yield, and leaving the scene of an accident. He has has an extensive criminal history that includes drug charges, driving under a suspended license, and other traffic violations.

“It’s quite troubling,” said Sgt. Mike Farr of the Denver Police Department. “Here we are, less than a week later, talking about another DUI involved crash. I certainly hope this is not a trend.”

On August 28 — the previous Friday — a Denver Police officer had been conducting a traffic stop when a suspected drunk driver collided with him at around 4 a.m. The officer sustained multiple injuries, including a spinal cord fracture, a fractured jaw, and five broken ribs.

“There was a time when you could say we got to 3:00 to 3:30 in the morning and we were done with the drunks,” said Farr. “The drunks had made it home and we were able to get breakfast and wait for the burglary reports to come out when the sun came up. That’s just simply not the case anymore.”

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