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Irving Police Officer, Julia Durham, Speaks Out on Being Injured by Drunk Driver


Irving, Texas. February 20, 2019

Every day, Irving Police Officer Julia Durham wears her uniform with pride. She's known since high school that she wanted to be in law enforcement. 

"We sign up for a dangerous job and we know the risks associated with that,"  Durham said. 

Those risks became reality for her early Sunday morning.

Durham and other officers responded to a hit-and-run call at Loop 12 & Grauwyler Road around 1:30 Sunday morning. The scene was almost cleared. Durham went back in her vehicle and got in the driver's seat. She was watching over the scene when a drunk driver slammed into her car.

"The impact was hard," Durham said. "There was debris on the road and it was a pretty messy accident."

She said the vehicle was going at highway speed, about 60 miles per hour. All  the airbags in her police cruiser were set off, and her leg slammed into the steering wheel. 

One officer on scene ran over to cut Durham out of the airbags. Meanwhile, another officer arrested the driver, Brianna Noel James, for driving while intoxicated.

Officer Durham sustained minor injuries. She was taken to Parkland Hospital and was cleared. She has bruises on her thigh, and her leg, neck and shoulders are sore. 

She considers herself lucky, knowing her injuries could have been a lot worse.

For all of Irving Police Department, this incident hits close to home. It is a reminder of their first police officer killed in the line of duty. In 1993, Officer Glenn Homs was hit and killed by a drunk driver. 

A totaled vehicle can be replaced, but lives cannot be replaced. Durham hopes to remind everyone about the consequences of drinking and driving. 

She asks people to make a plan before going out to drink.

"Just don't drink and drive."

Full story on WFAA8

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