2009 Shows

A drunk driving fatality happens approximately every 40 minutes. The rate of alcohol-related accidents is 22 times higher than the death rate for American soldiers killed in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Why is a person with one, two or more DUI's allowed to get behind the wheel of a car? Is the system failing to protect us? Recently, Nick Adenhart, a pitcher for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, was killed in a crash involving an alleged drunk driver. But he wasn't the only person who lost his life. His friends Courtney Stewart and Henry Pearson were also killed, and Jon Wilhite was left in critical condition. Hear Courtney's mom, Carrie, tell the tragic story of how her only daughter was "murdered" by a man who was reportedly driving with a suspended license and had one DUI conviction. Next, Mary was in the car with her husband and 22-year-old son when they were hit by a drunk driver, and the young man was killed. Mary is now a representative for Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD). Then, Dawn is a repeat offender with two DUIs. She spent a night in jail, had a breathalyzer installed in her car and paid over $12,000 in legal fees, but says she still occasionally drives after drinking. Will she put down the bottle after Dr. Phil gives her a wake-up call, and she meets Carrie and Mary? Also joining the discussion is Jeanine Pirro, a hard-hitting, lock-'em-up judge who says Americans should be outraged and repeat offenders should be locked up, and Neil Shouse, a high-powered DUI defense attorney who says people are overzealous in prosecuting drunk drivers. Are drunk driving laws harsh enough? You decide. And, do you know when you've reached the legal blood-alcohol limit? Dr. Phil gives you pertinent information so you know when you've tossed back too many. Join the discussion.

Find out what happened on the show.
Replied By: aneal318 on Apr 28, 2015, 4:55PM
On November 17th 1994 We had celebrated Stephen's 6th birthday. On Novmeber 18th 1994 at 2:35pm my sons life was taken away from us because of a drunk driver. Because of one stupid decission to drive while intoxicated with alcohol and drugs the drunk driver made, my family was robbed of a life time of memories and happiness with my son. The drunk driver was on his way to pick up his three daughters in a vehicle that had no insurance and he was driving on suspended license. He jumped bail and was on the run for 3 years. When the new sheriff took office in the town he and the sheriff from the other town hunted the drunk driver down and found him under the bed in a house two towns away. When brought to trial he received a 10 year sentence served only 8 with no restitution to the family ordered. Robert Milton Shaw to this day has never showed one bit of remorse for murdering my son.Infact it became common knowledge that when he saw my sons dead body at the scene he laughed hysterically. So not only did We have to go through the agony and grief of loosing a my son , the pain and agony of trials and hearings, we also had to swallow all the expenses incured. While the drunk driver lived comfortably with our tax dollars keeping him up in prison, and his family lived on welfare and foodstamps. We struggled financially and lost everything we had to cover expenses incured. Yes the system failed my son.
Stop and think before you drive and drink. It takes 2 seconds to pick up the phone and call a cab, family member or friend, whom I am sure be willing to come pick you up and drive you home. Don't rob families of a life time of happiness because of your piss poor decission making skills. I havent been the same since Stephen was murdered yes I said murdered because if you are drinking and driving then you are turning that vehicle into the loaded weapon.
Replied By: mares56 on Oct 17, 2014, 10:56AM - In reply to zapatme
BINGO!!! I am tired of the blatant hypocrisy - you cannot continue to allow restaurants and bars to exist and have these stringent DUI laws out there. The majority of Americans have NO idea that they can have their life ruined drinking ONE Drink and driving home. We have to make up our mind if Bars are legal or not and IF THEY ARE then the Mothers Agains Drunk Driving that want the world to stop having a drink so Their Kids won't get killed Need to Pay for Free Taxis home for the restaurants.
Replied By: mares56 on Oct 17, 2014, 10:49AM - In reply to janetabc
your comment makes sense. don't you think the public is unaware that ONE drink can get them a DUI?
Replied By: mares56 on Oct 17, 2014, 10:46AM - In reply to ritakau
this is a good solution. This would weed out the true drunks from the poor casual drinker that gets stuck with a DUI for going to their Class reunion and eating dinner and 2 drinks! I am tired of DUI laws being ineffective and ending up only harming the decent tax paying citizen who wants to go out for dinner and have a drink twice a year!
Replied By: mares56 on Oct 17, 2014, 10:41AM - In reply to jctenn
Alcoholism is a disease. All these stricter laws ARE NOT SAVING LIVES. If you want to stop drunk driving fatalities, make the family responsible for having their perpetually drunk family memeber reported to authorities and have their driver's license revoked.

I hardly ever drink. Ever. I drink about 3 times a year. It would kill my stomach to try and drink anymore than that. I went to a class Reunion in 1999 and had 3 drinks with dinner at the only restaurant in town ( thus the police sit outside of it and pull everyone over that comes out of the parking lot that has been there for more than an hour, to get promotions and ticket revenue). I left driving very carefully, no crossed lines, in my black lincoln. I was pulled over immediately and charged with DUI.

8 years later, I went out, as I was really lonely, needed to see a friendly face and had 1 glass of wine and left after I nice chat with friends. I was pulled over immediately and given a DUI.

I lost my job, my house. I am not the only one who is upset about this.

No one makes an effort to educate the Public that JUST ONE DRINK and they can give you a DUI and wreck your life. All the police and MADD commercials make it look like you have to be Drunk to get a DUI. NO ONE is intoxicated after ONE drink and setting this limit is absolutely rediculous and hypocritical.

Either shut down bars and restaurants or raise the limit back to .12. The Public has NO IDEA that they can get arrested for 1 beer after work.

You have had all these laws made harder and harder and they are destroying innocent folks lives! YOUR ARE NOT succeeding in getting the big drunks off the road, Are You?!
Replied By: jctenn on Oct 14, 2014, 10:43AM
I have no use for a drunk driver.  I worked in Law Enforcement for 36 yrs.  If you are going to kill someone, use a vehicle and be drunk.  Jail time is bad enough, but what would be worse, is stand before a Judge and him/her tell you to sign your name to a check and give it to the injured party.  If the DUI had to pay for it this way, they might think about it in the furture. 
Replied By: penpusher on Jul 4, 2014, 9:09AM
Anyone drinking and driving after hearing of such horrible things happening is asking for something to happen. the girl on the show is in total denial that she is doing something wrong.  NO ONE should drink and drive..,.EVER!   even after a couple of drinks your judgement is impaired.  my husband was a heavy drinker for years and i tried to get him to stop but couldn't. i now know i was an enabler not because i thought it was okay but because i should have given him an ultimatum. i was afraid he would be so hurt and would harm himself. how stupid is that?  he ended up stopping only because he was given an ultimatum from his boss and went to rehab but actually just stopped drinking immediately on his own.  the treatments kept him from doing it again.  he ended up with liver disease and recently passed away young from that. i now regret not making him stop sooner and blame myself for his illness at times however i know it wasnt my fault. he could have killed someone on the roads.  PEOPLE STOP DRINKING AND DRIVING!!!
Replied By: sunshinesgift on Aug 5, 2013, 9:07PM
I know I posted my story on Dr.Phil's Favorite Shows,but this topic is so very important to me that I want to post my story here also.I am a survivor of a drunk driving accident,NOT a victim.That is something I have to tell myself often also.Since I have already told my story once on this website,I will try and make it short.It was Nov. 23,2010,8:00 pm.I had dropped my 3 boys off at wrestling practice, and my daughter was at a friends house.While the kids were all busy doing their thing,I planned to pick up some last minute things for the holiday.I was on my way back to pick everyone up when the accident happened.This I was either told or I read about,because I do not remmeber the entire day.I was at a complete stop when a car driven by a 62 yr. old woman on her way home from work bartending at the local Eagals Club,ran into the back of me,this sent my car into oncoming traffic were I was hit again,that sent me back into my original lane,I was hit a 3rd time and then thrown out of the car.When they got to me I was unresponsive.I flatlined twice in the helicoptor on the way to shock trauma.I spent the next month in a coma,I missed all the holidays with my family and my youngest sons birthday.When I finally a woke I was moved to another hospital,and then another.I suffered life threatening injuries,my aorta was cut,and I suffered a perminant brain injury and I will never beable to work again.I was not even aloud to be discharded from the hospital until they were certain I had family to live with me.My husband and my kids live with me but I cannot live by myself ever and social security will not even send me my disability checks,I have to have a payee,my husband.I am only 42 yrs. old know.This is not something I should be having to deal with or my family.All because someone decided that they would drink while working.I do not see how that can be legal,but I cannot find a lawyer in the state of Maryland who will fight this for me.If anyone out their knows of anyone who will help me fight this,I only have until Nov. 23,2013,PLEASE help.Otherwise I will continue to fight this on my own.It will be slow,like I said I have a brain injury,but this is a battle I will not give up on until the day comes that I cannot battle anymore,and then I will battle for others,because in the end,no one should have to battle this hard when they are the "victim" ,that is a word I hate using but in this context I have too.In the end it always seems like they more money you have,the better lawyer you can buy to get you off for things that you do not even realize put other people at risk too.My accident happened right when my kids started to become old enough to drive.Know this has always been a sore topic for me because I have always felt that the driving age was to young.I always told my kids,I did not stop being a parent when they became 16,and it was not their driving I was most affraid of,it was the other people on the road.I could control their driving to a point,or atleast teach them the best I knew how to drive,but I could not control the other drivers on the road and their habits,and then my accident happened.I can count and so can my kids,on their hands,how many times they have seen me drink.So drinking and driving became a REAL part of their lives in an instant.They lady who hit me was a repeat offender,who was legally able to be a bartender and do her work release at the very bar she worked at,got drunk at,left when her shift was over,and hit me and in Maryland the only one responsible is her,that cannot be right and if it is,the law has to be changed!!
Replied By: lizzylov on Feb 14, 2013, 9:40AM
Drunk drivers get away with too much. In 2009 A drunk female hit me on my way home from work and put me in ICU. I had my knee shattered on my left leg and my right leg my heal was shattered and my ankle and on both sides and my tibia were broken. I wore 4 casts and in a wheel chair for a year. I had to use a walker for a while and then on a cane. I was left disabled. The pain is so bad just to stand on my legs. I did not heal well and so now this is my life.I was so upset that the judge gave me a talking to. She was sentenced to 3 years community arrest. she gets to leave jail everyday and go to work and then sleep in jail. She left me with $200,000 in medical bills. She had no insurance, no license and she apologized to the court. She was an educated woman, and I spoke and asked the judge if he could have her pay my medical bills. I explained that I was not able to work and I lost my residence, my car was totaled and on top of it all my grand daughter wrote a letter to the judge. He did not want to hear it. He said to me. "Don't you think she has paid enough"? I was shocked, she changed my life and Now I have to live on disability, I live on $730.00 a month. That does not cover my rent. What is wrong with our judicial system? How did she become the victim? I used to jump rope with my grand kids and play soccer, run and chase them around. Now I can walk for 15 minutes and the pain gets so intense I have to sit down. This was her 4th offense and she was charged with vehicular assault. It is not fair but the judges feel sorry for these people.
Replied By: revakussmaul on Oct 2, 2009, 12:44PM
I just finished watching Wedesday's show on drunk driving moms.

I'm astonshied and baffled why AA wasn't mentioned anywhere at all.

It's great that you're willing to spring for a rehab and perhaps the 12 step program is part of their agenda, however, what about those that you aren't going to pay for to go to rehab.

I CANNOT believe you didn't talk about AA for those who were watching and buying the BS that there's not a support system "out there for me" as Joanie claimed of her small town.  I refuse to buy that there are no meetings near her or did she even look or is she aware of AA?

These days there are phone meetings and on-line meetings.

It seemed as if Holly was going to mention AA because she said there was help out there and it was absolutely free.

I've been a sober member of AA for 11 years so I am pretty flabergasted that it wasn't even mentioned.

I would certainly be willing to talk to your producers about drunk driving (I was one for 30 years) and the success I've experienced in this program because I gave up my excuses (I had more than Joanie, BTW) as I started when I was 12 and got sober at 45.

If there's a reason you don't talk about the 12 steps I'd sure like to know what it is.

Reva Kussmaul

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