Home / Auto News / News article: Good Samaritan Arrested for Driving Drunks Home
 |  Aug 05 2010, 8:20 PM

Seriously, how can we live in a country where this can happen? Last Saturday, Jonathan Schoenakase of Quincy, Illinois was arrested for operating the pictured vehicle, a courtesy shuttle home from local bars to keep drunk drivers off the road. Sounds like a good idea, right? Well, local taxi companies lobbied to make it illegal.

Jonathan’s friend was killed by a drunk driver in 2009, and as a way to keep drunks off the road, he started offering rides home. The rides were free, although he would accept tips. The business soon grew, adding a second car, and then the bus. Taxi companies, thinking Jonathan was taking their money, lobbied that he was operating a Taxi service without a license, and won. The Quincy Government removed the words “for hire” from its definitions of the words “Taxi Service,” thus eliminating the loophole under which Schoenakase was operating.

Schoenakase has applied for a license, but the local cops say he needs to clear up some “legal issues” before he is approved. He has continued to offer the service during this time, and has been arrested a total of three times for his efforts.

We understand the law is the law, but how can one guy, with one bus, driving drunks home as a tribute to his friend and saving countless lives in the process, get arrested repeatedly? How can a politician, or series of politicians, be corrupted so badly by local businesses that charity becomes illegal?

The worst part? A taxi license in Quincy, Illinois costs $10. No, really.

  • Bill Jenkins

    I consider taxi cab drivers and taxi companies to be amongst the most low-life operations in the USA in many towns.

    The cabs are often not well maintained, the drivers are some of the strangest and scary people you will ever do business with, and the companies themselves are often actively engaged in ripping off people and lobbying local politicians with kick-backs for favors.

    I suggest the people of quincy organize a boycott and protest of the local cab companies and put them out of business.

  • E.A. Daniels

    Where is MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving)?