Dad Arrested for Speeding, Misses Daughter's Birth

April Peveteaux

man misses birth arrested speedingIf you're looking for one of those feel-good speeding to the hospital stories -- this is not it. In fact, this is one of those stories that makes you wonder if there is any compassion left in America, and what in the world was this police officer thinking?

Marc and Paula Santala live two hours from the hospital where the couple wanted their baby to be born. As Paula's labor progressed, Marc's foot got heavier on the gas pedal, as one might expect. So it's not completely surprising that the Colorado state trooper clocked Santala as going 101 and pulled him over. Did the trooper arrange for a police escort? Send the Santalas on their way yelling, "Godspeed!" after? Not even close.

Instead Marc Santala was handcuffed, and an ambulance was called to take Paula to the hospital. The daddy was held and not allowed back on the highway in time to see the birth of his baby -- which took place right at the entrance of the hospital. Also, he was cited for speeding and reckless driving.

Needless to say mom is pissed she had to go through this without her husband by her side, and dad is angry to have missed the birth of his eighth child. And the trooper? Well, he feels like he did the right thing by getting an emotionally charged man off the highway.

While I can see his point, why not let him go in the ambulance with his wife? Why not let him off with a warning instead of charging him? It's a pretty cold law enforcement official who sees a couple in need of assistance, and instead of helping in a positive way, treats the father like a criminal.

The man was trying to get his wife to the hospital so she could give birth. Perhaps he shouldn't have been going 101 and instead should have pulled over into, oh I don't know, the parking lot of a strip club, if the baby was ready. But even if his judgment was impaired by the heightened tension of the situation, the trooper should have assisted, not arrested.

Do you think this dad deserved to be handcuffed?

Image via Casey Serin/Flickr

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