My daughter Justine Pillar, Class of 2010, is the young woman who was struck by a drunken driver over Homecoming weekend as she crossed Davis Street and had to be life-flighted to Portland. I am very disappointed the article “Student, alumna injured in crash” that was published in The Linfield Review, which seems to place blame on the two victims of the crash, even though the driver that hit them, Daniel Algeo, was quite intoxicated.
In the article, Aaron Granum, stated that “the girls came out onto the road suddenly.” I would first like to point out that the author failed to take into account any other eyewitness or police statements and did not report that Justine and Celeste Wilson were walking across the street not alone, but in a group of four people when they were hit. In addition, the women had to cross one full lane on the street before reaching the lane the driver should have been in. Granum stated in the article that Algeo “did not seem intoxicated,” and he believes, “the accident was not caused by Algeo’s intoxication.” It was not mentioned that Algeo did not pass his field sobriety test, was not able to stand on one leg and blew a 0.2 (2 ½ times over the legal limit for driving in Oregon) when he hit the victims. I have to wonder, was Granum’s perception of the incident the eyewitness account of a sober student?
-Robbie West Pillar