Wrong-Way Driver In The Village

    East Hampton Town and Village police, together with the Sag Harbor force, made a total of 12 drunken-driving arrests this past week, not counting the two that followed the Napeague crash early Sunday morning, reported separately in this issue.
    A 2007 Toyota Tundra allegedly going the wrong way on Fithian Lane, a one-way street, resulted in a traffic stop on May 22, and the driver, Micah R. Diener of Manahawkin, N.J., 45, was charged with driving while intoxicated. East Hampton Village officers said Mr. Diener, a self-employed contractor, turned off Fithian onto Pantigo Road and made an illegal U-turn onto Main Street, where he was pulled over. Police said he failed roadside sobriety tests before being taken back to Cedar Street headquarters, where he was held for a morning arraignment. In addition to the D.W.I. charge he was cited for three moving violations.
    He was released on $500 bail the next morning.
    Nicholas D. Wrathall, who identified himself as a film producer from Marina Del Rey, Calif., was similarly charged early Sunday morning after being stopped on Montauk Highway near Georgica Road. Village police said his westbound 2010 Jeep was swerving across lane lines at about 3 a. m., and that Mr. Wrathall “stated that he had been drinking.”
    He too was released on $500 bail.
    Village police also arrested Michael A. Fribourg, 22, of Manhattan, early Monday morning, saying his 2013 Audi had crossed over double yellow lines several times. He was pulled over on Pantigo Road, almost exactly in front of East Hampton Justice Court, where he told Justice Catherine Cahill in the morning that he had just graduated from New York University.
    During the arraignment, a man began knocking on the side door of the courthouse. An officer went to the door. “Where do I get a beach pass?” he was asked. He was told to return the next morning, after the holiday, and go to Town Hall.
    “So it begins,” said Justice Cahill, who set bail at $750. The young man’s father, who was seated in the courtroom, said he would post bail.
    Last Thursday at about 1 a.m., Sag Harbor police stopped Melissa C. Flores, 33, of Springs, whose 1988 BMW  was said to be swerving along Hampton Street. She was charged with drunken driving after allegedly failing field tests; the amount of bail was not immediately available.
    Two men who were arraigned on D.W.I charges Saturday morning lacked valid driving licenses. Hipolito Guiterrez Garcia, 52, of East Hampton was stopped the night before after town police spotted him in a Nissan Ultima on Boatyard Drive near Three Mile Harbor Road, East Hampton, allegedly driving without headlights. Back at Wainscott headquarters his blood-alcohol content was recorded at .10; the legal limit is .08.
    Mr. Guiterrez Garcia told the court at his arraignment that he is a landscaper. After setting his bail at $350, Justice Cahill cautioned, “You don’t have a license. This is much more serious. There is now an alcohol-related revocation in your name.” An unlicensed driver with an alcohol-related charge pending can face jail time if re-arrested.
    Edwin E. Atariguana-Pelaes, 27, of Springs found himself in the same situation that morning. Town police reported spotting him driving a gray Nissan with Virginia plates, on Springs-Fireplace Road in East Hampton, swerving back and forth onto the shoulder.
    Speaking to the man through a court translator, Tanya Valverde, Justice Cahill was told he was a cook. “He isn’t working right now,” Ms. Valverde told the court. “That’s probably going to change,” the justice said, referencing the arrival of the summer season. She then repeated the warning she had given to Mr. Guiterrez Garcia about the consequences of a second unlicensed-driving arrest.
    Town police stopped Daniel Lenahan, 43, of Water Mill near Dolphin Drive on Napeague at 1:30 Saturday morning, saying that his 2011 Toyota Tundra was swerving across lane lines. According to the police, Mr. Lenahan, a property manager, refused the station-house breath test, meaning his license will automatically be suspended for one year. He told the court in the morning that he had a prior conviction for a lesser alcohol-related charge, driving with ability impaired.
    Justice Cahill set bail at $350. “Can you post that?” she asked. “Yes,” answered his wife, who had been in the car at the time of the arrest.
    Berkely A. Olkes was arraigned Tuesday morning after being arrested on Folkestone Drive in Springs. “I just moved here,” she told Justice Cahill, who asked if she had a way to get to work. “Yes, I have a car,” the young woman answered. “I understand,” the justice said, “but I’m about to suspend your driving privileges.”
    Mark J. Dizon, 41, of Brooklyn was charged just after midnight Sunday when the 2006 Land Rover he was driving south on Three Mile Harbor, near Copeces Lane in East Hampton, almost hit an oncoming patrol car. Bail was set Monday morning at $350. Mr. Dizon, who told the justice he was an architect, was reported to have had a blood-alcohol content of .09, just over the limit.
    Town police said they stopped a  Brightwaters man, Kevin P. Brennan, 30, early Monday morning after watching his 2006 Mazda, headed east on Main Street in Amagansett, riding the shoulder. Mr. Brennan’s breath test resulted in a .09 reading, the police said. At his arraignment, he said he sells “boutique beers” for a living. “I’ve been coming out fishing since I was a little boy,” he told the court, adding that he stayed with an uncle. “So, that’s where you spent last night?” Justice Cahill asked him. “I stayed in jail last night,” he replied. “I mean, in an ideal world,” she said. Mr. Brennan allowed that in an ideal world he would have spent the night at his uncle’s. Bail was set at $350.
    A Hollywood, Fla., man, Chad S. Benenfeld, 36, was said by police to have been driving on Old Montauk Highway near Lincoln Road in Montauk when he crossed onto the shoulder. He told Justice Cahill he was in marketing, and runs a retail business with his father. “I was headed back to my hotel,” he said of his Tuesday morning arrest. His Intoxilyzer test gave a reading of .11, according to the police.
    Bail was set at $1,000 for Mr. Benenfeld, who has a prior drug felony conviction in Florida. Justice Cahill explained that the relatively high amount was to ensure that he returns to court. “If you don’t come to court, my arm is not long enough to reach you in Florida,” she said.
    A 2012 Mercedes-Benz sports car being driven by Dylan R. Silverman, 23, of Dix Hills made an illegal U-turn at 3 a.m. Sunday on Pantigo Road, according to town police. After being brought back to the station on a charge of drunken driving, he agreed to take the blood-alcohol test, which gave a reading of .14, according to police. Mr. Silverman, who works in digital marketing, posted bail of $350 later that morning.