When Joseph Shea looks back on Thanksgiving 2012, he might have a hard time being grateful.
Shea, 22, was arrested on charges of drunk driving at the Westampton Police Department. He was there to pick up another individual who had earlier been charged with the same offense, the Associated Press reported.
Shea, who lives in Tabernacle, arrived at the police station around 6:45 a.m. Thanksgiving after an unidentified person called for a ride after also being charged with DUI. Eyewitnesses say Shea was driving at a high rate of speed in the parking lot, according to the Associated Press. He was questioned by police and later charged with driving under the influence.
He was released on his own recognizance later Thanksgiving Day and picked up by an unknown person.
Shea’s arrest comes just in time for a friendly reminder that National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention Month begins this Saturday.
Mothers Against Drunk Driving is encouraging all drivers to tie a red ribbon on your vehicle’s antenna or place a window decal as a promise to drive safe, sober and bucked up this holiday season and all year.
More than 63,000 drunken driving victims and survivors benefitted from MADD programs in 2011, according to its internal tracking data. Still, 28 people die every day in drunken driving crashes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration FARS date for last year.
For more information about the dangers of drinking and driving click HERE.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also reported 211 children were killed in drunken driving accidents in 2010; 131 were passengers in a vehicle where the driver was drunk.
To prevent any of those tragedies, MADD is offering tips for a safe holiday driving season:
• Designate a sober driver before celebrations begin.
• Never serve alcohol to those under the age of 21.
• Plan safe parties, including providing non-alcoholic drink options to guests and not serving alcohol the last hour of the gathering.
• Be prepared to get everyone home safe in case your plans or individual circumstances change.