Family who lost loved one in drunk driving crash begs everyone to celebrate NYE responsibly

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) – This month, there have been more than a thousand DWI allegations in Harris County and law enforcement said they are bracing for what they know will be a busy New Year’s Eve.

“It was one of the big concerns about tonight that this is the first New Year’s Eve in two years where things are going to be somewhat open,” said Sean Teare, Harris County District Attorney’s Office Chief, Vehicle Crimes Division vehicle, said.

More officers will hit the streets of Harris County on New Year’s Eve as part of the “No Denial” initiative.

“Tonight, we’re going to have at least 50 percent more officers for every agency in Harris County,” Teare said.

The ‘No Refusal’ initiative came into effect at the end of January and the goal is to get more people to choose to drink and drive on the road.

“The ripple effect of a stupid choice to get behind the wheel after you’ve had a drink is phenomenal,” Teare said.

Iyana Harris-Smith’s family knows this all too well.

Reta Harris, Iyana’s mother, said: “I don’t want to be in your situation.

In October, the car 20-year-old Iyana was driving was stopped at a red light when a truck rammed behind her, killing her. The truck driver was charged with manslaughter.

“It’s not just going to be a really sad one moment and one week decision. This will affect people for the rest of their lives. Nightmares that don’t end, stress disorders. The trauma doesn’t stop,” said Imani Rose Johnson, Iyana’s sister.

Iyana’s family said the holidays are hard without her and they want to do what they can so other families don’t fall into their shoes.

“Oh my God, it’s that simple. Just make a phone call. Do it. Find a designated driver,” Harris said.

Copyright © 2022 KTRK-TV. Copyright Registered. Family who lost loved one in drunk driving crash begs everyone to celebrate NYE responsibly

Dais Johnston

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