Having a designated driver became popularized in the 1980s. While the statistics are somewhat muddled, it is believed that having a designated driver has reduced the overall occurrences of drunk driving. One thing to keep in mind, however, is that your designated driver actually remains sober and they also have a valid driver’s license. CBS News reports on a man who made his 11-year-old nephew drive because he was not sober.
29-year-old Genoro Lopez had a warrant out for his arrest for being an unlicensed driver. He also had a previous DUI in May 2017, when the California Highway Patrol arrested him in Ventura, California.
On October 22, just before 3 p.m., Genoro was arrested, and not because he was behind the wheel. He was caught in the passenger seat, where he had made his 11-year-old nephew drive because he was too drunk to do so himself.
A patrol officer saw the boy driving northbound on Surfside Drive in Port Hueneme, California. The boy pulled over and first said that his uncle was teaching him to drive. He later admitted that his uncle had made him drive because Lopez was too drunk to drive himself.
Lopez was found in the passenger seat, displaying clear signs of intoxication. He also had an open container in the vehicle. Police also found an imitation firearm between the passenger seat and the door.
Lopez admitted to using methamphetamine several hours before the traffic stop, while his nephew was in his care. The boy was released into his mother’s custody.
Lopez was charged with felony child endangerment along with his outstanding warrant. Bail was set at $50,000.
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