Spring Lake police chief suspended

Full story: WOOD-TV Grand Rapids and Michigan

Roger DeYoung, the police chief for the Spring Lake/Ferrysburg department , is serving an unpaid and mandatory suspension after being involved in a traffic accident on December 13.
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1 - 20 of 66 Comments Last updated Jan 7, 2009
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red

Holland, MI

#1 Jan 2, 2009
He should be thank full to still have a job. My company had a "ZERO tolerance" for anything like that. To be a Police Chief/Officer and keep your job, darn good union.

“Just be you. ”

Since: May 08

Muskegon,MI

#2 Jan 2, 2009
We have been seeing a lot of 'public' people getting in trouble for this sort of thing lately....wonder why?
Dave

United States

#3 Jan 2, 2009
He was drunk and we all know it. Went home and drank more. lier.He should be fired. If anyone should know better itis him.
Rockford

AOL

#4 Jan 2, 2009
sorry all... fine guy.. another waste of tax payer money.. put yourself in his shoes.. all of you would have refused blood test. Also Red... unless you work for a super dutch company.. i bet you can drink when off "duty". Your company can not control what you do off time..

“Just be you. ”

Since: May 08

Muskegon,MI

#5 Jan 2, 2009
Rockford wrote:
sorry all... fine guy.. another waste of tax payer money.. put yourself in his shoes.. all of you would have refused blood test. Also Red... unless you work for a super dutch company.. i bet you can drink when off "duty". Your company can not control what you do off time..
Now you can't say what we ALL would have done.

First off, I don't drink and drive. But if an officer asked me to submit to a breathalyzer or a blood test...I'd probably do it. So don't say we all would refuse.

Second, he maybe a nice guy...matter of fact I am sure he is. I lived in SL for quite a few years and both of my kids still attend school there, it is a GREAT city.

But he still broke the law. Regardless of who he is or what he does. So this is not a waste of anyone's money...it is what would be done to any person that was involved in a crash while driving while intoxicated(how many every drinks it may have been).
donkeyjim

Muskegon, MI

#6 Jan 2, 2009
Drinking on the job, TOTALLY unforgiven, FIRE HIM>>>>>>

“November 12th, 2011”

Since: Nov 07

up a tree

#7 Jan 2, 2009
In the article he claims "the test is inaccurate because he had more to drink after arriving home following the accident." This implies that he was consuming alcohol prior to driving his public owned vehicle, which should result in some sort of charge regardless of the percentage, as well as losing his job. It never cease to amaze me how the rules apply differently to "civil servants".
holland

Hudsonville, MI

#8 Jan 2, 2009
Rockford wrote:
sorry all... fine guy.. another waste of tax payer money.. put yourself in his shoes.. all of you would have refused blood test. Also Red... unless you work for a super dutch company.. i bet you can drink when off "duty". Your company can not control what you do off time..
This board is full of people who like to see high achievers crash & burn. Not really sure why that is. Frustrated w their lives, perhaps. Everyone makes mistakes. Many like to tar & feather those w any kind of authority in these types of situations. Must be hard to be perfect.

Since: Jun 08

Nashville, MI

#9 Jan 2, 2009
Rockford wrote:
sorry all... fine guy.. another waste of tax payer money.. put yourself in his shoes.. all of you would have refused blood test. Also Red... unless you work for a super dutch company.. i bet you can drink when off "duty". Your company can not control what you do off time..
They CAN control what you do when you are in a company car!!!!
Judy

United States

#10 Jan 2, 2009
The test's are only inaccurate when it involves one of their own. If it were an ordinary person, when then the test uncontestable. Fire him! He is a lying pig just like the rest.

Never empty

Saint Charles, IL

#11 Jan 2, 2009
MIbowhunter wrote:
In the article he claims "the test is inaccurate because he had more to drink after arriving home following the accident." This implies that he was consuming alcohol prior to driving his public owned vehicle, which should result in some sort of charge regardless of the percentage, as well as losing his job. It never cease to amaze me how the rules apply differently to "civil servants".
Quite to the contrary...these "civil servants" are judged much more harshly. You apparently don't know much about law enforcement and the consequences they suffer in situations like this. They're human....just like the rest of us.
Jared from Subway

Redlands, CA

#12 Jan 2, 2009
holland wrote:
<quoted text>
This board is full of people who like to see high achievers crash & burn. Not really sure why that is. Frustrated w their lives, perhaps. Everyone makes mistakes. Many like to tar & feather those w any kind of authority in these types of situations. Must be hard to be perfect.
Police chief of Spring Lake is considered "high achiever?"

Wow, what are you smoking?

“November 12th, 2011”

Since: Nov 07

up a tree

#13 Jan 2, 2009
Never empty wrote:
<quoted text>
Quite to the contrary...these "civil servants" are judged much more harshly. You apparently don't know much about law enforcement and the consequences they suffer in situations like this. They're human....just like the rest of us.
And yet, the listed consequences for his actions prove that you are wrong. He was not judged more harshly than a private citizen. To drive a public owned vehicle for private use and have alcohol in your system while you are driving is grounds for prosecution AND termination in most fields. He recieved a 30 day suspension. You call that harsh? Please.....
snomad

Hudsonville, MI

#14 Jan 2, 2009
Reading the article, he does appear to be sincere in that alcohol is an issue in his life. Many people would not immediately own up to their poor choices. In fact, most would be consulting an attorney and considering "loopholes" before admitting anything. Smack 'em hard enough to teach him a good lesson... but I would hope Lady Justice keeps her blindfold on and falls short of destroying his career. Given the opportunity... He may be an excellent police officer (off duty too) and an example to others from here on out. Even though police officers are held to higher standards... everyone makes mistakes.
Lets get it right here

Hudsonville, MI

#15 Jan 2, 2009
PART 1...

There are way too many posts ahead of this one to quote/reply to them all...so I'll just try to address the issues raised by all of you in the first 13 posts on this thread.
First...it is NOT AGAINST THE LAW to drive after drinking alcohol. It IS AGAINST THE LAW to drive if you have a BAC above .08 in Michigan.
Now, I do not know what the level was with his blood test, which is far greater in the accuracy since it is the actual concentration of alcohol in the blood stream rather and not the estimation of through a breath sample. That is why it is called a "PREMILIMARY breath test."
So, it doesn't matter if he was UNDER .08 when it comes to the LAWS OF MICHIGAN. He is NOT in violation if under that level.
Second, none of us know what the policy is for the village of Spring Lake with respect to whether they consider his department car as totally village property or if he is allowed to use it for personal use. If it is allowed for personal use, then there are different rules then if it is for "official use only."
My guess would be that it is somewhere in between and that is why he has been given the suspension. But as long as he was below the .08 level, he is NOT a DRUNK DRIVER as defined by Michigan State law.
And NEITHER WOULD ANY OF US READING THIS THREAD.
Regarding his going home and drinking some more...not really a valid issue. He was pulled out of the snow bank, information was exchanged and to both parties, ISSUE SOLVED.
It is the insurance company who when contacted required a police report. And many car insurance companies have 24 hour customer support, so its not unreasonable to have officers respond at 4 AM, especially if it wasn't many hours after the accident.
They couldn't do a breath test, he wasn't driving...so they go with the blood test. Why wouldn't he agree to it. They take blood at the hospital and go home and go to sleep. Nothing can be done until the results come in from the lab anyway.
donkeyjim....NO ONE has said he WAS ON DUTY at the time. Yes, he's the chief and on call 24/7, but he does have a life like the rest of us. Show me where it is reported he WAS WORKING on the clock. This is just your own preconceived anti-cop attitude and opinion.
Lets get it right here

Hudsonville, MI

#16 Jan 2, 2009
MIbowhunter...READ MY COMMENTS under "First..." He is NOT on duty 24/7 and is entitled to a life. If he is allowed to use the car as a personal vehicle, as long as he complies with village policy, he isn't in direct violation and subject to termination. I think they did what was right, and suspended him for a prescribed period of time as he was obviously in violation to some degree. If it happens again, then he will probably be terminated.
JUDY...can't tell you have had dealings with cops as a back seat passenger. Sheesh.
They took the most accurate test they could. THE REASON IT ISN'T ACCURATE in this case is that the TEST RESULT IS NOT AN ACCURATE INDICATOR of his level of intoxication AT THE TIME OF THE INCIDENT...but IS ACCURATE of his level of intoxication AT 4 AM.
The police report IS about the incident at whatever time it occurred...NOT what he was doing at 4 AM. Had he not been drinking anything for several hours and they showed up at 4 AM and gave him the blood test...HIS LEVEL WOULD BE LOWER then at the time of the accident AND THEN YOU'D STILL BE CALLING HIM A LYING DIRTY PIG.
MIbowhunter...he HASN'T BEEN JUDGED because he ISN'T CHARGED WITH A CRIME. There was an accident, an unreported amount of time passes before the insurance company states they want a police report and officers are called. They respond to the chief's residence and ask for a blood test after talking to him. I'm certain he admitted to drinking earlier, or he could have claimed he was sober at the time and only drank upon getting home if REALLY WANTED TO protect himself. That would be him lying...but clearly, he told the truth.
The report has been forwarded to the prosecutor for review. If he deems it worthy, he'll hand it off to Muskgeon, Allegan or Kent County's prosecutors if he thinks it may lead to criminal charges as it would be a conflict of interest if he was involved. But he'll make the inital review.
But as I have clearly outlined on here, HE MAY BE IN VIOLATION OF VILLAGE POLICY, but it wouldn't appear he is in violation of State Law.
Lets get it right here

Hudsonville, MI

#17 Jan 2, 2009
Well, as usual...damn computers and web pages.

I'll do this again, it erased my PART 1 and only posted my PART 2.

So this will be PART 1.

There is a lot of stuff being posted on here and it is too much to address individually, so I'll post it here in group.

For those of you saying that he was "drunk"...unless he was at a BAC of .08 or higher, he is NOT drunk and is NOT in violation of State Law.

It is NOT ILLEGAL to drive in Michigan with alcohol in your system. IT IS ONLY ILLEGAL if you are above the .08 level.

Second, what are the conditions of his use of the Taurus? Is it strictly for "official use only" or is he allowed to use it as his personal vehicle? I don't know...but that makes a difference.

If he can use it for personal use, he is NOT on duty 24/7, it is a personal car. Do you drink and drive at legal levels with your car?

I don't know what policies the village have for take home vehicles...but I suspect they some kind of policy because he has been suspended.

I wish I could remember all I typed, but it is lost to the dang cyber demons of "Al Gore's internet."

Sorry about that.

“Just be you. ”

Since: May 08

Muskegon,MI

#18 Jan 2, 2009
Lets get it right here wrote:
PART 1...

First...it is NOT AGAINST THE LAW to drive after drinking alcohol. It IS AGAINST THE LAW to drive if you have a BAC above .08 in Michigan.
I believe it is.

I think you can still be charged will 'driving while impaired' or visibly impaired.

You are not off the hook just because you BAC wasn't the exact .08.

You are still ,more than likely, impaired to an extent.
puzzled in GR

Grand Rapids, MI

#19 Jan 2, 2009
I find it interesting that two people responsible for the law - one for law making (Kevin Green) and one for upholding it (Spring Lake Police Chief) are both let off the hook for driving under the influence (and Mr. Green was so drunk he passed out after vomiting on himself), yet a local university president was forced to resign for lesser impairment, and his job was not in the law field! Perhaps justice isn't blind - it's only blind toward those who make and "uphold" the law!
SOS

Wixom, MI

#20 Jan 2, 2009
Chances are he'll get off because he has connections. I hope the rotten pig gets into another wreck but this time kills himself.

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