Defendants who go to court charged with a Los Angeles DUI may anticipate a lecture from the judge who hears their cases. They likely would never anticipate, however, is that the judge would sentence them to jail… and then spend the time behind bars with them!
Stories in North Carolina’s Fayette Observer and in the Washington Post tell the tale of Sergeant Joe Serna, a retired Special Forces veteran who served almost twenty years with the U.S. Army. He survived four tours of duty in Afghanistan and had close brushes with death three times; he earned three Purple Hearts.
Serna’s wartime experiences never left him entirely. He suffers from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and he has had some substance abuse problems. After being arrested for DUI, he had been on parole and enrolled in a veteran’s treatment court program supervised by North Carolina’s District Court Judge Lou Olivera.