Theresa Rosales

Theresa Rivera Rosales

Director at Socorro County

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198 Neel Avenue, Socorro, New Mexico, United States
HQ Phone:
(575) 835-0589

General Information

Recent News

Theresa Rivera Rosales, coordinator for the Socorro County DWI program said that to be considered driving under the influence your blood must have 0.08 parts of alcohol to blood if you are over 21, and 0.02 if you are under 21.
She also said that there are many ways that officers can tell if you are driving while intoxicated. For example, if you are swinging extremely wide turns, or straddling the center lane or lane marker, you might get pulled over. And of course, if the officer smells alcohol, sees bloodshot or watery eyes, or your speech is slurred, you will be suspected of DWI. What can Socorro County residents do to help? If you see a driver not following the road rules, call the DWI Hotline at 394 for cellphones or 877- DWI HALT (877-394-4258) so an officer can catch the driver. Rosales said that during festivals, parties or big events, police set up road blocks late at night to early in the morning. Road blocks give officers an opportunity to check many drivers easily. What can Socorro County residents do to help? If you know a friend or family member is going to a party where there will be alcohol, offer to pick them up. If you have a party at your house and you are serving alcohol, never let anyone who has been drinking drive home. Take away their car keys. Rosales said DWIs are very serious criminal charges that effect every aspect of your personal life. In addition to a $7,000 fine, you lose your driver's license and your privilege to drive. But it doesn't end there. You must serve community service and jail time. This can affect your job, and your family. DWIs are very serious. "They stay on your record forever," said Rosales. "Once it's on there, it's not coming off." As a parent, you can make sure your children don't drink and drive by setting and enforcing rules and making consequences for them if they break them. Parents should make sure their child is comfortable leaving parties when alcohol is involved. Parents should also keep in contact with their child's friends' parents. Rosales said there is a DWI awareness program at Socorro High School educating teens about alcohol abuse.

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Theresa Rosales, DWI compliance officer for Socorro County, says DWI isn't just for alcohol anymore.
"We're seeing more and more cases of other substances," she says. The conviction rate is about 70 percent, which Rosales finds frustrating. "Things end up getting pled down," she says. "I understand in saves money, but we had one man who was arrested 12 times. He's in prison now, but it should never be allowed to go that far." Rosales says statistics from the Department of Health show that Socorro County ranks second in the state for repeat arrests, with 30.1 percent of DWI offenders between 2002 and 2009 getting picked up a second time. "That's nothing to be proud of," she says. Rosales takes some pride in saying there hasn't been a DWI fatality in the county since 2009.

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Theresa Rosales, the Socorro County DWI Coordinator who has the difficult job of making sure offenders comply with their sentences, is concerned about the statistics and wants to see the re-arrest rates drop.
"There's a problem with alcoholism and drugs in the community," Rosales said. Rosales says treatment is important, but not enough. "Maybe it would deter more people if first time offenders really had the book thrown at them," Rosales said. "I don't think the system is failing, but there are so many loopholes," Rosales said. Rosales is looking for ways to "change societal norms. The DWI Planning Council is holding a meeting on Wednesday, March 24, 8:30 a.m., at the office of Terra Luna Counseling in the old Val Verde hotel, and Rosales is hoping for public input. "In this entire town," she said, "there must be at least 10 people out there with an idea for us." For more information, contact Rosales at 575-838-2208.

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