ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A suspected drunk driver cruising for miles down I-25, right through Albuquerque, until a State Police officer ran him off the road before he could kill someone.
Just after 9:30 on Saturday night, State Police Sergeant Jonathan Tenorio says he was chasing down a wrong way drunk driver on I-25 near the Big I.
“A lot of things are going through your mind. You’re hoping this guy doesn’t kill anybody. I’m hoping I get there before anybody else does,” said Sergeant Tenorio.
That guy is Justin White. State Police say they got a call about a white pickup truck heading south in the northbound lanes of I-25.
Police believe White got onto the interstate almost ten miles away at I-25 and Tramway.
“As you see the headlights coming, it becomes so surreal. You have a big vehicle coming right towards you,” said Sergeant Tenorio.
By the time police caught up with White near the Lomas exit, they say he was traveling at about 65 mph. That’s when Sergeant Tenorio did what was necessary.
“I tried to do a pit maneuver and put him against the concrete barrier,” he said.
That didn’t stop White. He continued to drag Sergeant Tenorio’s police unit for a few feet.
“My main concern was getting that truck stopped as soon as possible,” he said.
As soon as Sgt. Tenorio got White to stop, one thing became clear.
“I do recall though, as soon as we had the window rolled down, a strong odor of alcohol just emitting from the vehicle and that person,” he said.
Sergeant Tenorio’s police unit did suffer some damage, but he knows it could’ve been much worse.
“Body damage can get replaced. Lives can’t, so I’ll take this any day,” he said.
Police say two other patrol cars were damaged during the DWI stop, one of them was totaled.
According to online court records, this is White’s first DWI arrest. He was charged with aggravated DWI because he refused to take a breathalyzer test.