Memorial checkpoint planned for victims of DUI - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Memorial checkpoint planned for victims of DUI

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MCMINN COUNTY, TN. (WRCB) -- The Governor's Highway Safety Office is holding a sobriety checkpoint in memory of three teenagers who died as a result of a crash.

Seventeen-year-old Racheal Slade and 16-year-old John Daugherty were killed four years ago when their car was hit head on by a drunk driver in McMinn County.

Another teen in the car, Shane Stanridge, died this year from injuries he suffered in the crash.

Of course, law enforcement stressed Wednesday that this memorial checkpoint shouldn't have to happen in the first place.

"Three teenagers driving down Highway 305 talking and totally not expecting the danger that was traveling towards them," says Clint Shrum with the Governor's Safety office.

Shrum says that's the case in nearly every alcohol related death.

Four years later, the memory of three innocent teenagers Slade, Daugherty and Stanridge live on.

McMinn County will set up two memorial sobriety checkpoints this weekend in their names.

"Of course, there's no erasing the pain," says Shrum. "We can and will celebrate the lives of these three over the next few days. And send the message out that impaired driving will not be tolerated here or anywhere else in the state."

They plan to prosecute anyone, just like they did for the man who caused the death of the three friends.

William Ottman is serving 20 years on vehicular homicide, vehicular assault and drug possession.

All three families of the victims agreed to place their pictures at Friday's checkpoints.

Shrum says, "When you put a face with it. Parents, grandparents who are grieving daily. It will hit home. If one person watches this and their mind is changed forever, it is well worth it."

The two memorial checkpoints on Friday night will both be on Highway 411, one outside the Etowah Police Department and one on the McMinn and Polk County line.

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