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John Newsome himself called it potentially "damaging," and virtually everyone would agree with that.

But ... dangerous?

That was a stickier question. Quaffing more than a gallon of beer in five hours sure would seem to impair your ability to drive. But Newsome, our district attorney, has contended he was fine on a recent evening when he zoomed away from a downtown bar after being caught on tape finishing the last of 134 ounces of beer.

You can be sure this issue will stay in the news over the next few months, assuming Dan May collects enough signatures to challenge Newsome for his seat. Unfortunately, a gray area is likely to remain, since no one not even Newsome himself will know what his blood-alcohol content actually was that night.

We figured it's worth trying to lighten that gray area. So we assembled a trio of responsible adults (as well as a couple designated drivers and a reliable tester) to replicate Newsome's intake and see how it impacted them.

We're certainly not scientists, and are fully aware that our little experiment (documented in our cover story, "Drink, drank ... drunk?") hardly ends the conversation. But if it adds to it in any valuable way, we'll drink to that.

  • We figured it's worth trying to lighten the gray area surrounding DA John Newsome.

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