BEXAR COUNTY - One deputy arrested is one too many. That's what our sheriff says about one of her own being caught drunk behind the wheel. Now an unprecedented program is offering a safe alternative.
It's a big problem, said Bexar County Sheriff Susan Pamerleau.
It continues to be the top issue to tackle.
I think the community is aware, said Jennifer Northway with MADD.
For Pamerleau it became an even bigger eyeopener when some of her deputies made headline news.
Susanna Cervantes was arrested for DWI on January 3.
And not long, a few days later a second deputy, said the sheriff.
Soon after, a third deputy was arrested on suspicion of DWI.
I knew then we had to aggressively attack this, Pamerleau said.
Deputies who feel they have had too much to drink can now receive a free ride home, thanks to Yellow Cab.
All they have to do is show their credentials. The Deputy Sheriff's Association of Bexar County will foot the bill for its 1,040 members.
I m hoping the cost will be low. Not because they are not using (the program), but because they have gotten the message and they don't need to use it, said the sheriff.
Deputies who use the program can do so anonymously. As for the ones who were arrested this year, Sussana Cervantes has since resigned. The other two deputies served administrative leave and are back on duty.