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Editorial: License record drives home need for reform

The other shoe has dropped for Dennis Drue, whose name has become somewhat infamous in the Capital District in past weeks, and the Siena student is facing quite a set of charges in a Saratoga County court. You can read all about it on our website, spotlightnews.com.

Our story covers Drue’s alleged involvement in the Northway crash last year that killed Shen seniors Chris Stewart and Deanna Rivers, and badly injured teens Matt Hardy and Bailey Wind. But what prosecutors included as part of the indictment against Drue were portions of his driving record.

Since 2007, Drue has racked up the following on his driving record: 13 speeding tickets (some for more than 30 mph over the limit, and one after an accident); two tickets for blowing a stop sign; a ticket for an uninspected vehicle; two tickets for driving while using a cell phone; a ticket for obstructed view; a ticket for having a light out; and two tickets pertaining to the windows on his car. The vast majority of these tickets were upheld.

Add to that the fact Drue’s license was suspended no fewer than five times for failing to answer a ticket or pay fines, and on another occasion for racking up three speeding tickets in an 18-month period. He was also involved in four car accidents (not including that fateful December crash), one of them a hit-and-run, and was found to be at fault in each and every instance.

A six-year window is a goodly span of time, but this list is voluminous by any standard. And yet on Dec. 1 of last year, when Drue allegedly clipped that SUV and sent it rolling off the road, he was behind the wheel holding a valid license.

Whether or not Drue should be punished for his actions will be left up to the legal system. But the entire affair should also demand a reexamination of our traffic laws.

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