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Wrong-Way Driver Charged with 5th OWI

Hartland man charged with felony after driving the wrong way on Capitol Drive in Brookfield.

A Menomonee Falls police officer returning from the Waukesha County Jail Friday night prevented a possible tragedy when he pulled over a wrong-way driver in Brookfield on Capitol Drive.

The driver, 48-year-old Daniel M. Goepel, of Hartland, is charged with his fifth drunken driving offense after being arrested by a Brookfield police officer. He faces up to three years in prison and a $10,000 fine if convicted of the charge.

According to a criminal complaint:

The Menomonee Falls police officer was traveling eastbound on Capitol Drive when he saw a vehicle leave a strip mall, turn left onto Capitol Drive and travel west in the eastbound lane. The officer activated his emergency lights as the vehicle came near him. The vehicle pulled over and the police officer contacted the Brookfield Police Department.

The officer from Menomonee Falls took the driver’s keys, noting that the driver, later identified as Goepel, smelled like intoxicating beverages. The Brookfield police officer arrived on scene to handle the investigation.

Goepel told the officer he was drinking and had screwed up, realizing he traveled the wrong way in traffic. He failed his field sobriety tests and had a .20 percent blood alcohol concentration.

After Goepel was arrested, he told police he consumed alcohol from noon to 8:30 p.m. Friday. He told police he knew he had too much to drink, that he shouldn’t have driven and he was thankful he didn’t hurt anyone.

Goepel previously was convicted of drunken driving in April 1994, February 1996, December 1996 and January 1998.

Born Free January 29, 2013 at 09:24 PM
We all have spasm every time we hear about a drunken driving fatality and then wonder why the drunk got beyond their 2nd OWI in the first place. If anyone hasn't noticed that the OWI graduating penalty system generates loads of state revenue you've been conned. Drunken driving arrests are a cash cow for the state and lawyers. I'm a firm believer that law breakers should get penalties, after all I've never seen a case of beer driving off in a car and wind up injuring or killing it's self and or other libations and or other people. Unfortunately the down side to this method of collecting revenue is that more revenue can be generated and collected at the whim of legislators by merely lowering the blood alcohol limit which of course has historically been done. Give them an inch and they will alway's take a mile without regards to any checks or balance.
Nuitari (Grand Master Editor) January 30, 2013 at 02:13 AM
I've been echoing this. DUI/OWI prosecution is a huge game that produces nothing but money for the state and the defendant's lawyer.
KAY KRISTIN January 30, 2013 at 10:02 PM
So....you suggest we should just let the drunks alone?
Team Christine January 30, 2013 at 10:09 PM
No, they SHOULD find an alternative. Addiction is a disorder or 'sickness'. However, with limits being So LOW, people find themselves F'd pretty good. I have seen an 72 y/o man with NO criminal history get in ALOT of trouble for ONE drink. EASY revenue! Other States have Programs, they can revamp the current & still make money~just not as much as they Like.
Team Christine January 31, 2013 at 12:07 AM
Yes, this IS Excessive, but an addict gets out & goes right back at it. Their 'hard' time should be of USE. Perhaps in a program that serves a purpose, keeps them busy & Helps Community. Prison makes you sink deeper into that deficiency no matter how strong minded one is. Deprivation adds to mental 'illness'. Plus, IF these people can work, a lot less 'Families' Might not be affected. The Majority incarcerated are for this. Besides, they make hootch/other in there too!

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