New! Episode 53:Driving Under the Influence: Surviving Family Member, MADD Advocate

Description: A personal story of losing a loved one to a DUI offender decades ago, the lasting impacts of that loss, how the case was handled at that time, the progress made with current DUI cases, what more can be done and how MADD and the DA’s Office is working to help victims and prevent more DUI tragedies.

Show Notes: Guests Rhonda Campbell and Lead Deputy District Attorney Gregory Hayes introduce themselves and their current roles related to DUI cases, victim advocacy and prevention efforts.

Rhonda begins the discussion by sharing her personal story – starting with what her family was like 40 years ago, who her sister Irene was, what she was like and what Rhonda remembers most about Irene. She then talks through the day 12-year-old Irene was killed by a four-time repeat DUI offender. Rhonda shares how the crash happened, what happened to Irene, how her parents were told and ultimately how her parents had to tell Rhonda that her little sister was gone.

Rhonda explains what happened in the criminal case against the DUI offender and how the offender’s rights were put ahead of the rights of Rhonda’s family. Deputy DA Greg Hayes then explains current DUI laws and what charges/sentences the offender in Irene’s case could have faced under current DUI laws. He also explains the progress made with victim advocacy and victims’ rights.

Rhonda talks about the lasting impact Irene’s death has had on her, her family and the entire community – even four decades later. Her way of honoring Irene’s memory is to dedicate her life to preventing other families from experiencing the same tragedy

DDA Hayes and Rhonda close the discussion by sharing information about the many DUI prevention efforts being made by the DA’s Office and MADD, including a number of programs for high school students as well as programs for adults.

Irene Ruth Harris



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Tags – Justice Journal Podcast, Driving Under the Influence, DUI, DUID, MADD, Mothers Against Drunk Driving