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Police: Dad has son blow into interlock to start car, drives drunk

Updated: 06/13/2014 5:32 PM | Created: 06/13/2014 3:50 PM
By: Lauren Hansard, KOB Eyewitness News 4

ROSWELL, N.M. -- Roswell police say Mario Cortez drove drunk with his teenage son in the passenger seat. And if that isn't bad enough, they also say his son blew into a Breathalyzer for him to get the car started.

According to RPD, Mario Cortez had an interlock ignition on his car, meaning it won't start unless he's sober. He has to blow into a Breathalyzer first.

"If you've had one sip of beer and blow into our machine, this machine will not allow you to start it," said Jerry Berg, who installs interlocks.

"It will come up and say blow and then you will blow and hum for three seconds and the machine will actually then either pass you or fail you,".

But police say that didn't stop Cortez from driving through Roswell intoxicated.

According to the report, police spotted Cortez driving erratically around 1 a.m. Officers say when they pulled him over, his 13-year-old son was in the car.

When they asked him how he got the car to start, he told police he had his son blow into the device for him.

"That's just totally unacceptable," Berg said.

According to Berg, even after the car starts, the machine will make the driver continue to blow.

"And as your traveling down the road from time to time, anywhere from 30 seconds to 30 minutes this machine will ask you for a re-blow," he said.

That could mean Cortez's son had been blowing into the Breathalyzer as they were driving.

Cortez failed the sobriety test and blew a .19.

He faces a slew of charges, including child abuse and DWI.


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