You better watch out, you better not cry, you better not… Drink and drive. Far from the North Pole, Santa Claus found himself in a less-than-jolly situation following the busy holiday season. Post Falls, Idaho made national news last month when a man who is legally named Santa Claus, was arrested for DUI. Law enforcement reported that the 67-year old was observed driving in the wrong direction down a Post Falls town road.
The Washington man, who just so happens to also have a full white beard, reportedly told police that he was not from the area and became unfamiliar with his surroundings. Strong odors of intoxicants were obvious from inside the vehicle, which remained in the wrong lane of travel during the traffic stop. Field evaluations were conducted by officers at the scene, where Claus had difficulty maintaining his balance.
According to court documents, reportedly admitted to having three or four alcoholic drinks earlier in the afternoon at the Moon Dollars Bistro- a Post Falls restaurant with a full bar. Claus was originally arrested and charged with DUI, which later was reduced to misdemeanor reckless driving. He pleaded guilty to the reduced misdemeanor charge in court on January 23rd, and paid a $700 fine.
Statistics show that the the highest reported alcohol-related driving fatalities take place between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. Santa Claus was pulled over traveling the wrong direction. It’s hard to say what could have happened had law enforcement not stopped him when they did.
The easiest way to avoid trouble and DUI during the holidays is to not drink and drive. Experts suggest arranging a driving service like uber or a taxicab to take you to where you’re going, then pick you up when you’re finished. This eliminates any responsibility to drive, because your car is located in a different place than where you’re consuming alcohol.
Drinking during the holidays is a regular part of the celebration with friends and family. It is important to drink responsibly and be cautious of your own safety and the safety of others.