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Richmond detective, assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney charged in DUI incident

SHORT PUMP, Va. (WTVR) — The long holiday weekend produces a number of deadly crashes in the Commonwealth.  Virginia State Police say 11 people died over Thanksgiving break, with four crashes linked to alcohol.

“The whole time period between Thanksgiving right through New Year’s is the deadliest time of year in the country for those driving,” Chris Konshak, the executive director of Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

And police say among those driving home over the weekend, was Jack Larry, who was arrested for DUI and refusal to submit to a breath test.  He was headed eastbound on Interstate-64 near Short Pump in a 2013 Volkswagen.

Troopers say the 32-year-old Larry was stopped for speeding when the officer detected an odor of alcohol.

Richmond police confirm Larry is a detective now on administrative leave.

“If you have a Virginia driver’s license, then you consent to have a sample of your breath taken if there’s probable cause for DUI,” said CBS-6 legal analyst Todd Stone.  “If you refuse the test, and you’re found guilty, it means an automatic one-year suspension of your license.”

Troopers say Larry’s passenger was Brooke Pettit, a 27-year-old assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney for the City of Richmond.  She was charged with being drunk in public, an unusual charge that begs the question: why?

“It’s pretty uncommon to see a passenger charged with drunk in public,” said Stone. “Normally, there has to be very visual proof that something is in your system to be charged with that.  And there has to be an appearance of belligerent activity.”

12 comments

  • Frank Smith

    So now, when you have a designated driver, the police can charge passengers as well?

    Yes, I realize that the driver was drunk. What if your driver was not drunk, but the officer suspect the passenger of being drunk? I guess no one will be allowed to be in a vehicle over the limit – even if a passenger.

    • evil ham

      Your not asking the correct questions… Just maybe….. Just maybe, she wouldn’ t listen to the officers orders.

    • Wayne

      Normally I would agree with you, but I’m willing to bet the “Passenger” made the officer aware that she was a CA in some very colorful language.

  • chris

    I wasn’t there, but the drunk in public charge may have resulted if the passenger got out of the car and was acting like a fool. That’s usually how it occurs. Driver gets arrested, and passenger tries to play sea lawyer…..

  • Walter White

    They are both toast in court. The testimony of a drunken city cop and prosecutor vs. a VA State Trooper. The judge will laugh at both of them, they may as well plead guilty at arraignment and get it over with. One thing is for sure, nobody questions the word of State trooper in court.

  • Glen Allen

    The best bet when pulled over (drunk or not), is to simply answer the questions (without your theory or excuses) with as few words as possible, turn the stereo off, be attentive, offer no additional conversation, and keep the chatter between you and the passenger(s) to an absolute minimum (with no laughter).

  • Clay Morrow

    I drive that way everyday, and so does my daughter. Glad the VSP were protecting us from this drunk city cop and prosecutor from plowing into us. What is up with the RPD ? Can they go a week without one them getting arrested for something?

  • Public

    To begin, obviously drinking and driving is not to be condoned. However, before everyone joins in the chant to ruin these 2 young lives…think about this. Everyone can make a mistake. The MADD director insists they should lose their jobs because they shouldn’t be arresting or prosecuting individuals for crimes they are doing themselves. Here is where he is only half correct. He doesn’t have to worry about them arresting and prosecuting people for misdemeanor DUI and drunk in public. These two focus their efforts on getting the monsters off the streets of Richmond. They are focused on removing the robbers, rapists and murderes that terrify the citizens and visitors to Richmond. These are the people that help guard you all from the wolves. The vast majority of the public has no clue what city officers have to deal with and see on a day-to-day basis. I encourage you to do a ride-a-along and capture a glimpse of what they have to deal with. Maybe then, the next time you see one you can thank them for what they do and for helping to keep you safe and for being the first one to respond when you are not.

    • dizzy

      One,nobody’s life is ruined on a 1st offense.the real lesson should be to respect the laws they are sworn to uphold.

      • athynz

        This could – and very likely will – end Larry’s career as a detective. As for Pettit – it would be a black mark for sure but not a career ender.

    • Ashley

      Are you kidding? Ruin their lives? They could have killed some one! I can see how someone elses life means nothing because he is a cop and she is an attorney! They should have known better, they need to practice what they preach! Give me a break!

  • M.L. Adams

    Troubling as this is, what really concerns me is a police officer socializing with an Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney! This would be an obvious cause for the reversal of any convictions where Pettit was the prosecutor and Larry testified.

    I agree that Pettit being charged with being drunk in public is probably bogus; a car is considered private property (you need a warrant to search one, just like a house, unless the owner gives permission;) chances are she gave the officer so lip.

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