Mother Speaks Out Against Repeat DWI Offenders - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

8/1/07-Flint

Mother Speaks Out Against Repeat DWI Offenders

Christopher Loper was killed by a drunk driver in 2000. Chad Collier, the 21 year old behind the wheel, had been arrested for DWI just two months earlier.

Christopher's mother, Tina says, "He lives every day with the knowledge that he has killed."

Now, Tina devotes her life to sharing Christopher's story with other convicted drunk drivers.  Many of them are repeat offenders. 

"There's anger. There's frustration. It makes my heart sick. I think they don't realize how lucky they are that they've just gotten caught for drinking and driving; that this didn't lead into something worse," says Tina.

She says very few of them are willing to take responsibility for their actions.

"I've not ever had anyone come up to me and say, 'I'm in AA now. I did have a problem, and I'm getting help.' That's not the norm. The norm is denial and excuses," says Tina.

7 years later, she says she's now forgiven Chad, even writing him letters from time to time.

"It's sad to see what this has done to him to. It doesn't take away what he did, but it wasn't just my child and my family that was impacted. It was his family's life. This was a young man who had potential," says Tina.

Her son's young life was taken too soon, and Chad's wasted because of one bad decision that can never be taken back.

Tina loper believes one possible solution to the problem is harsher punishment for first time offenders.

Chad Collier is currently serving a 60 year prison sentence. He will be eligible for parole in 2015.

Lindsay Wilcox, Reporting lwilcox@kltv.com

 

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