On Saturday, December 8th, Jerry Brown, 25 year old Dallas Cowboy player, was killed in a fatal car accident where alcohol was the prevalent cause. According to police statements, Brown’s teammate, Josh Brent, was the intoxicated driver of the vehicle. Brent, who ironically pleaded guilty to a drunken driving charge three years ago in the state Illinois, was arrested and charged with intoxiced manslaughter stemming from the late night crash that resulted in the death of his teammate. Brent who had his licensed suspended, served 60 days in an Illinois county jail and sentenced to two years probation stated just three years ago, “You get a new outlook on life and some of the mistakes I’ve made,” Brent told the Chicago Tribune in 2009. “You realize a lot of things, how naïve and how dumb you can be sometimes.” Unfortunately, that lesson did not stick with the Dallas Cowboy Josh Brent, now age 24 and facing 2 to 20 years in prison.
According to Twitter, the two Cowboys players were leaving a Dallas nightclub where Brent had been consuming high amounts of alcohol. There are many speculations on how Josh Brent was allowed to be over served at the Dallas Night Club and no statements have been made at the time of this release. However, if the bartender and cocktail server are found to be a party to Brent’s intoxication, they will likely also be held liable in the court of law and subject to jail time.
BADD’s mission is to formally educate bartenders and servers on the responsible service of alcohol to the general public. “It’s okay to drink and have a good time, however, there is an unwritten, two-way moral partnership between the bartender and the consumer to ensure the safety of the consumer and the general public”, stated Carol Wooden, founder of Bartenders Against Drunk Driving. Through formal education, bartenders and servers learn the alternatives to over serving and how to ensure that the consumer does not become a drunk driver by helping the customer find a safe ride home. “Often times, bartenders feel that the more they pour, the more they will get tipped”, stated by Jason Wooden. “However, the $10 or $20 tip is simply not worth the life of a human being and responsible bartenders have been rewarded for ensuring that their customers have a safe ride home.”
Bartenders Against Drunk Driving is praying for the families of both Jerry Brown and Josh Brent. Brent’s career is likely over forever, his best friend and NFL teammate, Brown is gone forever and the bartender or server will be impacted as well. Brent will forever live with the horrific consequences of the horrible decision he made to get behind the wheel while intoxicated.