New York: Are DWI drivers getting away with murder in Erie County?

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Drunk drivers arrested for sometime deadly crashes sometimes are facing their second, third, or fourth conviction of getting behind the wheel inebriated. Is Erie County tough enough on drunk drivers or are they getting off easy?

Charles Elberson has been wondering that ever since his 26-year-old daughter, Jocelyn, was killed by motorcycle driver 53-year-old David Smith on the Amherst bike path. Smith admitted he was drunk when he hit and killed Jocelyn and 81-year-old Sheila Pelton. It was Smith’s fifth DWI.

“My God, I never thought that this would happen to me, or my wife, and my family and it does. Then when you hear that this person has done this multiple times, you just ask yourself, why?” Elberson wondered.

WEB EXTRA | Watch Emily Guggenmos’ full 8-minute interview with Charless Elberson

John Sullivan with Erie County Stop DWI says they’re seeing more people with drinking problems on the road.

“People who are struggling with alcohol, or controlling their consumption of alcohol, or do it on a regular basis are becoming more and more of the people we see being arrested,” said Sullivan.

Each year, Erie County sees 3,500 DWI arrests. Around 1,000 of those are repeat offenders ….MORE