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Sep 16, 2011 3:23 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Southampton Man Charged With DWI After Driving Wrong Way On Sunrise Highway

Sep 20, 2011 12:38 PM

A Southampton man was charged with DWI early Friday morning after State Police said he drove the wrong way on Sunrise Highway in Hampton Bays.

An off-duty Southampton Town Police officer called 911 at about 12:35 a.m. to report that a motorist—later identified as John F. Jensen, 72—was driving westbound in the eastbound lanes of the highway east of Exit 65, according to New York State Police. Troopers said they blocked traffic at the Exit 65 overpass and were able to stop Mr. Jensen, who was driving a 2011 C300 Mercedes-Benz.

Mr. Jensen, who troopers said was unaware that he was traveling in the wrong direction on a divided highway, was arrested and charged with misdemeanor DWI after failing several field sobriety tests, they said.

He refused to take a breath test at the State Police barracks in Riverside and was held for arraignment at Southampton Town Justice Court, police said.

Mr. Jensen was released on his own recognizance following an arraignment in Southampton Town Justice Court in front of Justice Andrea Schiavoni, and is due back in court on October 12 at 1 p.m., according to court officials.

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Thank goodness he was taken off the road before another tragic wrong-way incident might have happened.
By marybmary (54), east hampton on Sep 16, 11 3:30 PM
He is an absolutey kind and generous person. Please don't rush to judgemet just yet. It's unfortunate but considering the circumstances thank god no one was hurt. Just remember, if this is because of bad judgement, we can always learn from each others mistakes.
By hamptonfoody (9), southampton on Sep 16, 11 4:10 PM
This would be a "cheap lesson," then.
By Frank Wheeler (1826), Northampton on Sep 16, 11 4:30 PM
The cemetery is filled with innocent people that were killed by nice people who were driving drunk.
By kaluss45 (44), southampton on Sep 17, 11 6:24 AM
1 member liked this comment
Are you for real ? What if he hit you head-on doing 60 mph ? Would he still be a kind & generous person ? ( albeit drunk and very stupid ! ) It ain't easy getting on the Sunrise Hwy in the wrong direction , Thank God the police were able to prevent a tragic ending !
By Bill in Riverhead (190), Riverhead on Sep 17, 11 6:50 AM
No rush to judgement-just a kind person who had to much to drink.
By EastEnd68 (888), Westhampton on Sep 16, 11 4:49 PM
I am sure he is a nice man but It's a funny thing, I don't remember so much sympathy for Linda Cabot
By They call me (2826), southampton on Sep 16, 11 5:24 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By politcal pawn (121), Flanders on Sep 16, 11 7:21 PM
I wasn't defending him, I would think thats his lawyers job, but your limited choice of vocabulary and calling him a savage shows a sense of reckless thinking almost like his driving. DWI is serious but unless he is a habitual abuser of this then I can't really judge a one time horrendous choice that he made. We're only human and no matter how big or small we make mistakes I am however glad that the outcome was not severe. I only hope and pray that this will help our conscience in our daily decision ...more
By localbigboy (7), southampton on Sep 16, 11 7:57 PM
1 member liked this comment
rush to judgement? He was drunk, driving the wrong direction, rush to judgement? Jeffrey Dahlmer was a nice guy too...
By just breath (82), yuck on Sep 16, 11 9:29 PM
Yes. I don't care how nice someone is, there is no justification for driving drunk. Period. I think that driving the wrong way on sunrise is more than a lapse in judgment. Anyone who would try to rationalize it is just being foolish.
By dnice (2346), Hampton Bays on Sep 16, 11 11:41 PM
There's no excuse for driving drunk, much less the wrong way on a divided highway. Thankfully the police were able to get him off the road before he hit someone.
By goldenrod (505), southampton on Sep 17, 11 12:00 AM
1 member liked this comment
When will all of these DWI’s stop?!?!?! It’s an epidemic!
By Robert I Ross (250), Hampton Bays on Sep 17, 11 4:12 PM
When society lacks despair.
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Sep 17, 11 4:21 PM
I note that one poster above compared the suspect to Jeffrey Dahlmer. That extreme comparison illustrates the factor in the crime that none seem to take into account. To wit, Mr. Jensen had no "evil intent" when he got behind the wheel drunk. His actions were extremely irresponsible and, aware as we are of the carnage caused by drunk drivers, he merits punishment if found guilty. But he didn't intentionally do harm. I presume that he didn't think that he was as drunk as he was and that he could ...more
By highhatsize (4217), East Quogue on Sep 20, 11 11:28 AM
How come you're not BLASTING the STPD for calling in Drunk Drivers when they aren't even ON DUTY? How dare these tyrannts collect paychecks... Aren't you curios if the off-duty PD got a 1/2 DUI arrest? kind of like a 1/2 sack in football? or an assist in hockey/basketball?!

HH, I expect consistancy from you - you're slipping in your old age.
By Nature (2966), Hampton Bays on Sep 20, 11 4:30 PM
to Nature:

By highhatsize (4217), East Quogue on Sep 21, 11 10:33 AM
That response is getting old HHS, just like your rantings.
By Nature (2966), Hampton Bays on Sep 21, 11 11:15 AM
No evil intent? If God forbid one of your relatives was going east bound you would know there was evil intent. But it's ok because the suspect isn't a habitual drunk driver. lol Ask any cop and they will tell you most drunk drivers are habitual they are just good at not getting caught!!
By chief1 (2800), southampton on Sep 20, 11 4:21 PM
1 member liked this comment