Austin Chief of Police Warns Against City Going Soft on Crime

Austin Chief of Police Spouts Disappointment at Recent Jury Verdict

Austin’s Chief of Police was disappointed with the verdict of a recent DWI trial. The case involved former Capitol aide Gabrielle Nestande, who received 10 years of probation and no jail time as punishment for running over and killing 30-year-old Courtney Griffin in May 2011. Nestande admitted to drinking ‘parts’ of five alcoholic beverages but supposedly felt “fine”. Art Acevedo blames Austin’s big heart on the reason for former legislative aide Gabrielle Nestande only receiving probation after being convicted of criminally negligent homicide with a deadly weapon. As a result of the case, many in the Austin area are calling for stronger penalties for failure to stop and render aid, one of the charges Nestande faced but was acquitted of by the jury. Democratic State Sen. Kirk Watson filed a bill on Feb. 21, the day of Nestande’s verdict, which would attach stricter penalties to drivers who fail to stop and render aid after hitting a pedestrian.

Chief Art Acevedo warns against the city of Austin’s quality of life being diminished by people who “kill folks” and do not get jail time until the second time. He says that Austin is known as a “laid-back” community and he speculated that the jury may have had their heartstrings pulled because Nestande was a “young defendant”.

Courtney Griffin is remembered as an animal lover and her friends have set up a fund in her name, the Courtney Griffin Fund, through a city animal shelter called “Austin Pets Alive!”. Her family and city lawmakers are fighting for tougher penalties against DWI hit-and-run offenders.

If you have been arrested for driving drunk, you need to speak to an experienced and skilled attorney for legal assistance.

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