One tragic death from a drunk-driving illegal was that of 20-year-old Natalie Housand in North Carolina. Another death caused by a drunk foreigner occurred Monday near Chicago, when 28-year-old Patricia Henneken, a wife and mother of an 8-year-old son, was killed while doing errands near her home. Her car was struck by Javier Rico, whose blood alcohol level was nearly three times the legal limit. His car was moving at 70-100 mph. Like so many others, he had been previously arrested for drunk driving but was not deported.
"The Latino community creates its own problems," said Joe Ynostroza, technical assistance director for the California Hispanic Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse in Sacramento, a nonprofit educational organization. The problem is especially acute in Mexico.
"Most of this is first- or second-generation Mexican males," he said. "Alcoholism runs rampant in the Mexican Latino community."
No other ethnic or racial group has such a high level of DUI arrests statewide, according to the California Department of Justice. Whites account for about 41 percent of DUI arrests, Blacks make up about 6.5 percent, and the remaining 7.5 percent encompasses all other racial groups combined. [DUI's culture gap, 5/21/06, The Record, Stockton CA]
The 2000 Census determined the California population of hispanics to be 32.4 percent, while 44.2 percent of DUI arrests that year were latino.
The House immigration bill would require automatic deportation for an illegal immigrant after the first conviction for drunk driving, a provision that would absolutely save lives.