Michael Goodove was the Keynote Speaker at the 2015 Mid-Atlantic DUI Conference, which took place on May 27 – 29 in Virginia Beach. The Mid-Atlantic DUI Conference is hosted by the Virginia Beach Police Department and is attended by public safety professionals around the country to hone their skills in DUI prevention, detection, and enforcement. Michael Goodove is the President of the Southside Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) and is lawyer who specializes in victim’s rights and is community activist in the prevention of DUI’s as well as the enforcement of DUI laws.
Virginian-Pilot, The (Norfolk, VA)
Deaths due to drunken-driving accidents in 2006, up from 322 the year before. However, Hampton Roads deaths went down from 32 in 2005 to 22 in 2006.
For city-by-city breakdown, see Page 5. By Jen McCaffery
Virginia police officers will be out in force looking to nab drunken drivers this Labor Day weekend, the third-most-deadly holiday for alcohol-related deaths.
The annual Checkpoint Strikeforce efforts are happening as state statistics show that for the first time in several years, the percentage of people killed by drunken drivers in Virginia has increased.
In 2005, there were 322 deaths in alcohol-related accidents, compared with 374 deaths in 2006, according to figures from the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles. However, in most South Hampton Roads cities, the number of fatalities from alcohol-related accidents during the same time period decreased, DMV statistics show.
Twenty-two people died locally in 2006, compared with 32 in 2005.
“Perhaps our friends in Hampton Roads are just listening a little better,” Virginia Attorney General Robert F. McDonnell said.
McDonnell, a former Virginia Beach legislator, helped implement a package of new laws that reformed the state’s DUI restrictions in 2004 .
They include harsher punishments for repeat offenders and mandatory jail time for some drunken-driving offenses.
According to the DMV report, Virginia Beach was the only city that recorded a significant increase in the number of fatalities from alcohol-related crashes .
Last year, Virginia Beach had 15 fatalities connected to people driving under the influence of alcohol.
In 2005, there were 10 deaths , DMV statistics show.
“We’ve come a long way, but the increasing number shows that impaired driving is a serious and high priority for both MADD and law enforcement,” said Mike Goodove , president of the Southside chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving .
The resort city’s DUI statistics don’t reflect the work of the Virginia Beach Police Department, which Goodove described as a model for the nation when it comes to impaired driving enforcement.
Virginia Beach police make about 10 percent of all DUI arrests in the state , said Sen. Kenneth Stolle, R-Virginia Beach, who used to work for the department.
In 2005 and 2006 , the department, which has two units dedicated to DUI enforcement, averaged about 2,000 arrests , spokesman Adam Bernstein said.
“The Virginia Beach Police Department does a great job of enforcement, but they can’t be everywhere,” Virginia Beach Commonwealth’s Attorney Harvey Bryant said.
He estimated that for every driver who is arrested on charges of driving under the influence, another 25 to 35 are on the street driving drunk.
McDonnell said he doesn’t believe that the state’s recent uptick in the percentage of fatalities statewide will become a long-term trend.
Over the past five years, the number of injuries related to people driving under the influence has decreased, he said.
Stolle, who notified next-of-kin about DUI-related deaths when he worked for the Virginia Beach Police Department’s fatality team, said it’s too soon to tell whether the numbers in South Hampton Roads reflect the impact of the new legislation.
“I would hope what you’re seeing is the beginning of a downward trend,” he said.
Jen McCaffery, (757) 446-2627,
lives lost in 2006
Copyright (c) 2007 The Virginian-Pilot
Record Number: 17792698
Author: JON FRANK THE VIRGINIAN-PILOT
Three lawsuits have been filed in Virginia Beach Circuit Court against a motorist who is accused of being drunk when he ran a red light and killed a 26-year-old father of two in November.
Steven C. Arcese, 50, had more than twice the legal limit of alcohol in his blood on Nov. 3, according to recent court testimony in the criminal case against Arcese. His Audi station wagon crashed head-on into a 1991 Chevrolet Cavalier driven by David C. Fisher.
Fisher died early the following morning from his injuries. His children, ages 3 and 6 months, suffered superficial injuries and have recovered.
Fisher was on the way to pick up his wife from her job at Wal-Mart in the couple’s only car when the accident occurred about 11:30 p.m. at the intersection of London Bridge and Dam Neck roads.
Arcese had a blood-alcohol level of 0.23 hours after the accident, police said. The legal limit in Virginia is 0.08.
The lawsuits were filed on behalf of Fisher’s wife, Mandi Rose Fisher, and the children.
One of the lawsuits was filed in February. The other two were filed Monday.
The lawsuits allege that Arcese was drunk and speeding, failed to keep a proper outlook, failed to keep his vehicle under proper control and did not obey traffic signals.
Each of the lawsuits asks for compensatory damages of $5 million and punitive damages of $5 million.
Michael L. Goodove, the attorney who filed the suits, said the children were traumatized by the accident.
Arcese is being held without bond in the Virginia Beach city jail. He is scheduled to stand trial April 23 on charges of aggravated involuntary manslaughter, driving under the influence and refusal to take a blood-alcohol test.
The maximum penalty for aggravated involuntary manslaughter is 20 years.
Reach Jon Frank at 446-2277 or jfrank(AT)pilotonline.com
Lawsuits filed by the family of David C. Fisher, who
died after a car ran into his, seek a total of $30 million in
punitive and compensatory damages.
Copyright (c) 2003 The Virginian-Pilot
Record Number: 0304130093
Virginian-Pilot, The (Norfolk, VA)
June 7, 1998
Rebecca Dorschel’s eyes flew open and her body tensed as the car swung wide and slammed to a stop, dragging an orange cone along with it.
Rebecca, 15, was a backseat passenger in a car driven by her cousin, Joel Webb,. She had ridden with Joel before, but never on a ride like this one where everything felt out of control.
Rebecca and Joel were two of the hundreds of Nansemond-Suffolk Academy upper school students who experienced, firsthand but in total safety, a drive with a drunk driver.
The frightening but enlightening rides were in the Drunk Driving Simulator, a 1996 Dodge Neon that the Chrysler Corporation has modified with an on-board computer programmed to delay the car’s steering and braking response time, simulating the slowed abilities of a driver under the influence.
“It felt really weird when the brakes weren’t working at all and the steering locked up so I couldn’t control it,” Joel said.
“And he is normally a very good driver,” Rebecca added loyally.
The Simulator was developed in 1988 to allow sober drivers, and passengers, to experience the dangers of drinking and driving while on a controlled course with a trained instructor in the car. The instructor enters the driver’s weight and the number of hypothetical drinks needed to reach a blood alcohol level of approximately .13 to .15 and the computer takes over. A blood alcohol level of .08 is the legal limit in Virginia.
A separate kill brake allows the instructor to disengage the computer or shut down the engine when necessary.
Kerry Dunaway, Simulator instructor, said that his wisecracks and the upbeat music that filled the parking lot are all intended to make the experience a fun, but memorable one. The nervous laughter and joking around that he normally hears from the teens turns to serious thought after they have knocked down a few pop-up pedestrians along the course.
“I love this job because it gives you an opportunity to maybe make a change in someone’s life,” he said.
It took an entire year for NSA’s 75-member SADD (Students Against Drunk Driving) club to bring the Simulator to the Academy, but their timing was good. Spring partying for proms and graduations makes the “don’t drink and drive” lessons most relevant.
“Overall I find that teenagers are receptive and responsible, more so than the adults,” Dunaway said.
Joel agreed, noting that most of the NSA students understand the importance of a designated driver.
Karen Konefal, a parent volunteer who helped register students to drive or ride in the Simulator, has a son and daughter in the school.
“You can talk to them until you are blue in the face but it is not like actually driving like you are out of control,” she said. “Hopefully this way they will remember to anticipate and not get caugt in the moment of a bad situation.”
Staff photos by MICHAEL KESTNER
Sarah Smith is all smiles at the wheel of the Drunk Driving
Simulator, but her back seat passenger looks a little apprehensive.
Yikes! A student driver nails a pylon on a tight turn while
operating the Drunk Driving Simulator.
Statistics drive home need to stay sober when driving
Mike Goodove, a Norfolk attorney whose brother was killed by a drunk driver in Charlottesville eight years ago, is also president of the South Side MADD, Mothers Against Drunk Driving. MADD is a supporter of the Simulator program. Goodove quoted the following statistics for 1996, the most recent available:
In Virginia in 1996 there were 7206 drivers under 21 involved in crashes. Alcohol was a factor in 346 of those.
Of the 3427 drivers under 21 involved in crashes in which there were personal injuries, 183 were alcohol impaired.
Overall, 39.8 percent of all traffic fatalities in Virginia that year were alcohol related.
Copyright (c) 1998 The Virginian-Pilot
Record Number: 9806050302
Virginian-Pilot, The (Norfolk, VA)
Author: MIKE MATHER, STAFF WRITER
The Virginia Beach Police Department’s new pursuit policy will allow pursuits for cases involving violent crimes against people, or for crimes involving guns or bombs. A headline in Friday’s newspaper only referred to the violent crimes.
Police Chief Charles R. Wall has banned all police pursuits in the city except for cases involving violent felons armed with guns.
The order, effective immediately, could eliminate nearly all police chases using motor vehicles, officers said Thursday. Police officers can no longer pursue drunken drivers, car thieves, burglars or other non-violent criminals who flee, according to the new order.
The June 2 memo from Wall was distributed to officers Wednesday night and Thursday morning. Some officers still had not seen the memo as of late Thursday. A copy was given to The Virginian-Pilot.
No other Hampton Roads jurisdiction has such a strict pursuit policy. The new order will affect other jurisdictions that chase fleeing motorists into Virginia Beach. Wall said those officers will be allowed to continue a hot pursuit in Virginia Beach, but they would not get help from his department’s officers unless the pursuit was justified under the new criteria.
The order is an interim step. Department officials are rewriting the pursuit policy, and the city’s officers will be given a chance to comment on a draft of the proposed orders. But Wall said he expects the final orders to be similar to the interim policy.
The new order is a sharp departure from the former policy, which allowed officers discretion as to when to begin a pursuit. The Police Department has in recent years allowed officers more latitude to aggressively halt fleeing motorists. Officers have been trained to use tire-deflating spikes and to box in fleeing vehicles with rolling roadblocks.
Also, a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision made it very difficult for citizens to sue police in federal court for damages or injuries resulting from pursuits.
Wall said it was the safety of the community, and not the Supreme Court decision, that guided him.
“I am very concerned, as you should be, about the dangers inherent in police pursuits of vehicles,” Wall said in the memo. “The conflict between our efforts to protect the lives of citizens . . . and engaging in high-speed pursuits through city streets should be obvious.”
The new order will allow a pursuit only when an officer believes a car’s occupant or occupants have used a gun or a bomb to commit, or to try to commit, a violent felony.
“All other pursuits are prohibited,” the memo said.
Wall said Thursday the decision to curtail pursuits wasn’t taken lightly. He and others studied the pursuit policies of jurisdictions in at least seven states. They also consulted with national experts on police pursuits.
The chief said, after the review, he and his staff determined a more restrictive policy will be safer for the public and the police officers.
The new rules come against a backdrop of several controversial police pursuits in Virginia Beach, including some that have killed innocent people.
On Jan. 21, 1995, a drunken driver eluded police for 15 miles before the van he was driving slammed into a sports car in Norfolk and killed two people. Although state police had taken over the pursuit, the chase started in Virginia Beach. That chase would not be allowed now.
On March 25, 1997, Bruce V. Quagliato led police on a low-speed pursuit that ended when his car and at least two police cars collided on Independence Boulevard. He died after several police officers shot him, thinking he was armed. He wasn’t.
Twice in 1997, motorcyclists being chased for traffic or equipment infractions died after crashing at high speeds. Neither pursuit would be allowed now.
On Feb. 6, police said a 14-year-old girl was driving a stolen car when she sped from a police officer on Shore Drive. She and a companion survived a crash that killed an innocent motorist, 56-year-old Michael Boynton, a retired Navy SEAL and war hero. That pursuit would not be allowed today.
On March 14, five teen-agers in a stolen car crashed after trying to elude police. The car’s driver and one passenger, both 14, died. That pursuit would not be allowed today.
“We considered (these crashes) and we considered the danger to our officers,” Wall said. “We have looked at this for quite a while.”
Mary Boynton, wife of the man killed by the 14-year-old car thief, said Thursday she never blamed the police because they were doing their job. She said she instead blames the teen-agers who stole a car and killed her husband.
The new policy drew mixed reactions.
“I think it is great. It is something they should’ve done a long time ago,” said attorney Jim McKenry, who represents Quagliato’s family. Quagliato was shot to death at the end of a police pursuit when he refused to comply with officers’ orders. Under a strict interpretation of the new policy, a similar pursuit would not be initiated now.
His client “would still be alive and well,” McKenry said. Quagliato’s family is suing the city for $5 million.
But Mike Goodove, president of Southside MADD, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, said he is concerned about any policy that could hamper police from aggressive DUI enforcement. Under this policy, police can’t chase a drunken driver who flees.
“The Virginia Beach Police Department should first of all be applauded for its efforts to combat impaired driving,” he said. “We would certainly interpret impaired driving as a violent offense because of the potential injuries and death the drunk driver would cause. Because an impaired driver poses a serious threat to others on the roadway, the proposed policy change to ban pursuits, with respect to drunk driving, gives us some concern.
“We are confident that the Virginia Beach police department will allow its officers to remove impaired drivers from the roadway while protecting the safety of those on the road,” Goodove said.
Lillian DeVenny, state president of Virginians Opposing Drunk Driving, said she can see both sides of the issue. An advocate for stringent police enforcement of DUI, she also knows a family whose son was killed in a police pursuit.
“In a way, (the new policy) angers me, but I have had ambivalent feelings on that matter for quite some time,” she said. “I feel the police officers have been doing their jobs as best as they can, but when I look at the other side of the coin, and see the victims of pursuits, I have second thoughts.”
The city’s new policy represents exactly the kinds of police guidelines that Wyoming-based STOPP, or Solutions to Tragedies of Police Pursuit, lobbies for. That group studies police pursuits and ways to reduce them.
“That is wonderful,” said STOPP’s Jeff Maceiko of the Virginia Beach policy. “We don’t want them to ban all pursuits, per se, but we do want to ban all except for the pursuits of violent felons. This exactly what we want.”
Several police officers contacted Thursday said the new policy will limit their effectiveness, and it may cause more motorists to run because they know the police won’t chase. They said drunken drivers, unlicensed drivers and other criminals would probably take the chance to escape. Many officers said only law-abiding drivers would stop for them now.
Wall said he doesn’t think that will happen.
“Every place we have looked that has similar policies, we found that simply has not been the case,” Wall said. “They reported that was not the result.”
Before Thursday, the decision to chase a suspect was left to the individual officer. The officer would have to consider, among other things, the risks involved, the severity of the offense, and the possibility of catching the motorist at a later time. Now, most of that discretion is eliminated.
“While none of us likes the thought of letting someone go who has committed a violation and compounded that by fleeing when we signal them to stop,” the memo said, “the overriding factor guiding all of our actions must be our concern for the safety of the officers involved and the citizens of the community, as well as the violators themselves.”
One of the city’s police-union representatives, Officer Bobby Mathieson, said his organization doesn’t yet have an opinion on the new policy.
“We welcome the public input on this,” he said. “The public should be a big part of this, to see if they support (the new rules), or if they don’t.”
Although the Supreme Court has granted police departments more protection, Virginia Beach is one of many agencies across the country adopting more restrictive pursuit policies.
Authorities in Florida said Hampton Roads fugitive Carl Douglas Consolvo outran a police officer because the Miami Shores Police Department doesn’t allow pursuits. Federal authorities said Consolvo then continued his crime spree, which included a wave of bank robberies and the shooting of a Utah police officer.
But even though police may sometimes fail to catch criminals, no-pursuit policies could save more than 100 innocent lives a year, advocates said.
In 1996, the latest year for which complete national statistics are available, 377 deaths resulted from police pursuits. Of those deaths, 111 were innocent third parties. The remaining 266 were in the fleeing cars.
Some states have tried to quell the number of police pursuits. Some of those efforts have targeted the motorists, and some have curbed the police.
Oregon lawmakers, for example, made it a felony instead of a misdemeanor to run from police. Other state lawmakers, like those in Delaware, are trying to craft statewide pursuit policies that all municipalities must follow.
Wall said the final version of revised orders could be approved and in place by next month.
More on PILOT ONLINE: Do you agree with the restrictions on Virginia Beach police pursuits? Cast an instant-poll vote and tell your reasoning in TalkNet at
Copyright (c) 1998 The Virginian-Pilot
Record Number: 9806050663
THE KEEPER OF the shooters is standing guard at a small makeshift bar just inside the door of the Bayou, the popular Virginia Beach club, when you stroll in one Saturday night.
You peruse her offerings. There’s tequila. The familiar Jack Daniels. Beer. And a bottle labeled “Goldschlager,” wrapped around a transparent fluid sparkling with tiny flecks of real gold.
“Try it,” she chirps. “It’s my favorite.” Why not?
Going down, the liquid delivers a blast of cinnamon. Then a sharp slash tears through your nasal passages. Your brain has only a moment to note this before its attention shifts to the blaze that has erupted in your throat. Congratulations. You’ve just joined a growing army of locals who, along with their beer and highballs, make room for “shooters” – syrupy, often brightly hued concoctions of alcohol and sugar.
They seem as much candy as liquor. They’re especially popular with women. They’re big business at many Hampton Roads nightspots.
That’ll be $3.75.
With drinking a major American pastime, it’s easy to see the appeal of tossing back an ounce or two of high-test with a fruity or minty taste. Call it convenience booze.
These candylike chuggers aren’t so harsh as shots of straight alcohol, but their kick is much the same. Usually concocted of fruit juice and two, three or four liquors – often varieties of schnapps – shooters are smoother than the rough medicine favored by cowboys, bikers and Keith Richards.
If you’re a shooter drinker, you’re probably a younger person; these are not Mom’s cocktails.
And if you’re having a shooter, you’re probably sharing the experience. Despite the popularity of cocktail and cordial products, including schnapps, state Alcoholic Beverage Control statistics show retail sales have remained steady over the past five years.
That means that not many twentysomethings are imbibing one shooter after another in the privacy of their homes. It’s a club thing, a night-on-the-town thing, a bonding experience sealed with a belt.
“You never sell just one shooter, ever,” says David, a bartender at Private Eyes in Norfolk. “When you’re having a good time and you wanna have a better time, shooters are always fun.”
Across the room, a tableful of men and women takes on a tray of Buttery Nipples – butterscotch schnapps mixed with Bailey’s. This is a thrice-weekly habit, though the number they order varies.
“Depends on what kind of night we’re having,” says one.
“One night we had 88,” another jokes.
Jim Beam’s Cincinnati-based DeKuyper arm trumpets about 50 cordials, including more than a dozen flavors of schnapps. Its Peachtree schnapps is the country’s best-selling domestic cordial. One of its latest triumphs is After Shock, a liqueur that melds cinnamon and mint.
Although there are one or two such biggies each year, one Bayou bartender says that about 30 shooters are regularly in circulation. The current favorite is the Volleyball: Wilderberry and BluesBerry schnapps, blue caracao, vodka and pineapple juice. The Wild Thing, which continues the tradition of innuendo-laden shooter tags like Buttery Nipple and Sex on the Beach, is also big this summer.
Some staples are enduring. Watermelon shooters. Orange Crush. Woo Woo, composed of vodka, cranberry juice and peach schnapps.
The Bayou runs regular shooter specials. Two bucks for a Blue Bayou or a shot of Jagermeister, a macho favorite that looks like blackstrap molasses and smells volatile enough to burn through the bottom of the cup.
“Why do people drink it?” wonders Jennifer, who’s having a beer at the bar. “It tastes like NyQuil.” Her theory: “It’s got a cool name and it gets you (messed) up.”
Bayou patrons sometimes underestimate a shooter’s muscle. “People think they can drink these all night,” the bartender says, “and they can’t.”
Mike Goodove, chairman of Mothers Against Drunk Driving’s Southside Community Action Team, says the promotion of sweet drinks is “still being studied” by his organization.
“It is something you’re gonna look at – how the restaurants and bars are marketing things.”
DeKuyper’s publicity handouts are careful to paint its fruits as adult. One photo depicts a ready-to-swig couple old enough to be the parents of a Bayou regular.
Dr. Roy Williams, an ODU chemistry professor and head of its enological, or wine-studies lab, calls shooters “just a way of getting people involved in alcohol. It’s a terrible way to introduce people to alcoholic beverages.”
He notes that even after one shooter, “your enzymes are saying, `Forget it, I’m not doing anything else.’ ”
That said, the country’s fitness mania may be part of shooters’ appeal. “Creamy drinks went out about two years ago,” one bartender says. “Girls, you know, they’re so health-conscious. It sounds silly – they’re drinking – but they’re into watching their weight. And there are a lot of calories in those things.”
Jell-O shooters, which also represent the gigglingly sexual side of the trend, enjoyed a brief popularity. With the prep time required, many bars don’t bother anymore.
But where old shooters have fallen, new ones have risen to take their place. “For tomorrow,” a distillery handout vows, “DeKuyper is already hard at work creating a future of great new cordial products for you.”
Think of the flavors that might exist by the time the Bayou kids’ kids are ready to partake. Perhaps right now, in a Midwestern lab, some visionary is charting the territory on which a million 21st century collegians will dance, will laugh, will love.
How long before we face Nacho Cheese Schnapps?
Color photo by Beth Bergman, Staff
Shooters, concocted of fruit juice and a variety of liquors, are big
business at many Hampton Roads nightspots.
Copyright (c) 1995 The Virginian-Pilot
Record Number: 9508180070
Shame on you for giving print to the ramblings of Arnold Peterson, driver of the chased van that killed two people on Brambleton Avenue the night of Jan. 21.
I’m horrified and sickened by his message that society is being “too harsh,” “funny and ambivalent about alcohol,” “out to give him the maximum sentence” and it was the “fault” of the Virginia Beach police that he ran!
How absurd! How disgusting! How irresponsible! How twisted!
Virginia Beach, March 9, 1995
Regarding “Driver breaks silence on fatal car chase in downtown Norfolk” (news, March 8): Arnold O. Peterson say, “Our society is so funny about this (alcohol). It is legal to buy, it is legal to use. But it is not legal to get behind the wheel with.”
Gee, Mr. Peterson – I wonder why?
Mr. Peterson made the choice to continue drinking and the subsequent choice to drive under the influence and not stop for authorities. Law-abiding citizens must begin demanding that criminals be held accountable for their actions. Mr. Peterson does not get the sympathy vote from me.
MARGARET A. FABIK
Norfolk, March 9, 1995
Two people were taken from this world on Jan. 21 by the reckless actions of Arnold O. Peterson as he fled police while intoxicated. After two previous DUI convictions, two other charges of DUI, a reckless-driving conviction, an improper-driving conviction and finally the deaths of two innocent people, Mr. Peterson now has the audacity to “admit that he did wrong” while remarking that the news media are being unfair to him and he believes “that anti-drunken-driving groups are being harsher than they should.”
In Mr. Peterson’s case, the only things that are not harsh enough are the criminal laws and maximum sentences which he is facing. The fact that Mr. Peterson still considers himself a “good driver” is enough reason to keep him off the roads forever.
MICHAEL L. GOODOVE, chairman
Mothers Against Drunk Driving
Southside Community Action Team
Norfolk, March 8, 1995
Copyright (c) 1995 The Virginian-Pilot
Record Number: 9503140005
The Virginia Beach man charged with killing two people when his van collided with their car after running a red light in downtown Norfolk has a record of drunken-driving charges that dates to 1976.
Arnold O. Peterson was stopped 19 years ago on his first DUI charge at the Brambleton Avenue exit on Interstate 264. He took the same exit Saturday night during a 15-mile chase by police that ended with the collision that killed a Richmond lawyer and a Virginia Beach woman.
Mike Goodove, chairman of the Southside chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving, called Peterson’s history of DUIs “shocking and appalling.”
“He is looking at 40 years if he is charged with aggravated manslaughter, and he is a man who deserves to be incarcerated,” Goodove said.
Killed were William L. Rosbe, a 50-year-old attorney who survived more than 200 missions in Vietnam as a Marine pilot, and 40-year-old Terrie G. Timms of the 1500 block of Southwick Road in Virginia Beach.
Peterson, 47, appeared Monday morning in Norfolk General District Court. Prosecutors said they would pursue two charges of involuntary manslaughter. They decided not to immediately prosecute drunk-driving charges for fear of double-jeopardy. The arraignment was continued until Feb. 8.
Additional charges are pending against Peterson in Virginia Beach, including reckless driving and a felony charge of eluding police,said Virginia Beach Police Department spokesman Mike Carey.
Meanwhile, authorities from three law-enforcement agencies involved in the chase defended their policies that govern high-speed pursuits, claiming that no violations by participating officers were committed Saturday night.
“I’ve gone over the policy any number of times in the past and again today,” said Lt. Col. Basil Belsches, deputy superintendent of the Virginia State Police. “And I can’t see where we went wrong.”
Belsches said the review of the incident will include a look at all relevant policies.
Carey and Norfolk Police Department spokesman Larry Hill said their agencies also are conducting reviews that will include pursuit policies, but both said their officers acted properly.
Carey said the chase was started by Virginia Beach officers, who picked up Peterson’s van on radar as it was speeding on International Parkway about 11:15 p.m.
“The vehicle was considered to be driving recklessly,” Carey said. “It was not a bald tire or a headlight out.”
Hill said Norfolk officers joined in when the car entered their city.
“Here is a man who had DUI convictions,” said Hill. “If you let him go, this drunk driver could go on down the road and kill someone else. It is a no-win situation.”
Officers in both cities performed secondary roles once state troopers took control of the chase near the Newtown Road exit of the Virginia Beach-Norfolk Expressway at the request of Virginia Beach police, Belsches said.
A state police car, which carried a camera that videotaped the chase, picked up the pursuit and followed Peterson on the expressway at speeds reaching 80 mph onto Interstate 264, where another state police cruiser joined in, Belsches said.
Both cruisers followed Peterson’s van when it exited I-264 at Brambleton Avenue. The state police cars remained about a block behind Peterson, Belsches said, as he raced along Brambleton, running red lights at speeds that reached 50 mph. Peterson then maneuvered his van onto the oncoming traffic lane on Brambleton Avenue. The street is divided by a concrete median.
Police first reported incorrectly Saturday that Rosbe and Timms apparently were leaving the opera in Rosbe’s 1983 BMW when the accident occurred. There was no opera Saturday night, but there was a Crystal Gayle concert at Chrysler Hall.
Hill said Rosbe’s car flipped several times because Peterson’s van hit the car broadside and pushed it against a curb. The curb, Hill said, acted “just like someone sticking their foot out and tripping you.”
Police said Peterson, of the 2100 block of Beckman Cove, was not seriously injured.
The van was owned by Nansemond Heating and Cooling. Peterson was not authorized to drive the vehicle, said the company’s owner, Grant Huneycutt.
During the chase, a representative of the company was called by police, who saw the company’s telephone number on the side of the van. The company representative said that the van was not supposed to be on the street.
“Arnie was not authorized to drive a company vehicle,” said Huneycutt. “He obtained this vehicle improperly.”
Before Norfolk police got involved, the troopers and Virginia Beach officers vigorously pursued the van in part because they mistakenly believed it might have been a vehicle stolen by youths involved in a Portsmouth-area robbery spree Saturday night.
Belsches said troopers involved in the chase also were acting under the impression that the van may have been stolen by the robbery suspects.
Portsmouth police arrested two teenagers on Sunday who are suspected in the string of robberies on Saturday in Portsmouth. Another teen was being sought Monday.
Peterson, who is being held in the Norfolk City Jail, was out on a $7,500 bond at the time of the accident for a DUI charge in Virginia Beach.
Carey said Virginia Beach police officers encountered Peterson at the intersection of Old Donation Parkway and First Colonial Road at 3:53 a.m. on Dec. 3. He also was charged with assaulting a police officer, resisting arrest and an unrelated domestic assault charge. He was to appear in court on the charges Feb. 27.
Peterson’s first DUI charge in Hampton Roads appears to have been in September of 1976 when he was stopped on Interstate 264 by the Virginia State Police.
He was stopped again less than a year later by Norfolk police on Llewellyn Avenue and charged with DUI. Both charges were levied before court records were computerized, and it was unclear if Peterson was found guilty.
However, records do show that in February of 1992 Peterson was convicted of DUI in Virginia Beach.
Peterson also has a reckless driving conviction in Chesapeake in 1991 and an improper driving conviction in Virginia Beach in 1994, court records show.
Both victims of Saturday’s accident were recently widowed. The survivors of Terrie Timms include three children. She also had three stepchildren whose natural mother is still alive.
Arnold O. Peterson was stopped 19 years ago on his first DUI
Copyright (c) 1995 The Virginian-Pilot
Record Number: 9501240281
When the Norfolk man saw a car swerve along Interstate 264, hit another car on Waterside Drive and then drive on, he grabbed his cellular phone and called police.
A dispatcher told him to wait for an officer. But when the drunk drove on, so did the man – through Norfolk, Portsmouth and Chesapeake, until three patrol cars ended the chase and he was finally able to hang up.
“I kept seeing my wife in that damaged car,” said the man, who asked not to be named. “I previously worked in an emergency room. I used to see what drunk driving can do.”
State police on Thursday urged other car-phone owners to report drunken drivers.
Along with Sprint Cellular and Hampton Roads Mothers Against Drunk Driving, the troopers announced the creation of a DUI hot line that will allow Sprint customers in southeastern Virginia to report suspected drunken drivers toll-free by dialing *DUI (*384).
It is the first time such a service has been available in Virginia, where there were 40,107 drunken-driving arrests last year, according to the Department of Motor Vehicles. Forty-five percent of the state’s 839 auto fatalities in 1992 were alcohol-related.
Sprint officials said the hot line has been successfully tested in Las Vegas and New Mexico. In Las Vegas, such calls have resulted in an average of five drunken-driving arrests a month.
But the extent of the local program is unknown because Sprint officials would say only that they had “many thousands of customers” and would not release an exact number.
There may be some minor problems with the new system.
The calls go into one of only three 911 phone lines at state police headquarters in Chesapeake. Police are asking callers to stay on the line if there is no answer.
Robert Sage, Sprint’s general manager for Hampton Roads, also said the new system is meant to encourage callers to report drunken drivers, not police them.
“This is going to put people on notice,” said Michael Goodove, a local MADD official. “Now, everyone with a cellular phone is going to have the power to turn suspected drunk drivers in.”
Copyright (c) 1993 The Virginian-Pilot
Record Number: 9305140630