Officers, activists join mourning family in message against drunk driving

The family of 22-year-old Destiny Tennison joined officials at a press conference Friday to warn to community against the dangers of drinking and driving.

The family of 22-year-old Destiny Tennison joined officials at a press conference Friday to warn the community about the dangers of drinking and driving.

LANCASTER – A family who lost a loved one in a DUI crash last month joined law enforcement officials and community activists Friday morning to send a clear message to the community against drunk driving.

“My daughter was a very beautiful woman… All we have left now is a box with her ashes,” said Rosa Tennison through tears. “My grandchildren will never feel the safety of their mother’s arms around them.”

Destiny was a passenger in a vehicle that crashed on Feb. 25 at a Lancaster intersection.

Destiny was a passenger in a vehicle that crashed on Feb. 25 at a Lancaster intersection.

“If there’s anything you can get from this, it’s don’t get in the car with someone who’s been drinking,” Rosa Tennison continued.

The group gathered at the corner of Avenue I and 15th Street East in Lancaster, the spot where 22-year-old Destiny Tennison was killed on Feb. 25 as the result of a DUI crash. Andres Rubidoux, the father of Destiny’s two young children, had been giving Destiny a late-night ride to Walmart, Rosa Tennison said.

The couple was traveling eastbound on Avenue I, approaching 15th street east, when Rubidoux traveled off the roadway and then overcorrected and lost control of the car, sheriff’s officials said.

The vehicle skidded through the intersection and crashed into a traffic signal pole. Destiny died at the scene of the collision, and Rubidoux was transported to the hospital where he was placed in intensive care.

Destiny's uncle, Juan Garcia, holds up a picture collage of Destiny and her two young children.

Destiny’s uncle, Juan Garcia, holds a picture collage of Destiny and her two young children.

Toxicology reports put Rubidoux’s blood alcohol level substantially above the legal limit, officials said. Rubidoux was arrested after his release from the hospital and charged with gross vehicle manslaughter while intoxicated, and other alcohol-related charges. The charges have now been upgraded to include murder, according to court records. Rubidoux is currently in jail on $1 million bail.

“It’s a terrible tragedy that a mother was taken away from her young children, and it’s a tragedy that didn’t have to happen,” said deputy Jon White of the Lancaster Sheriff’s Station’s Traffic Bureau. “I think it’s important to show our support for the family and the community and to make it known that these are the types of violations that we aggressively pursue.”

This past year alone, there were 103 DUI traffic collisions, which resulted in 55 injuries and two deaths in the city of Lancaster, White said.

Local law enforcement is taking a zero tolerance stance against drunk driving, said Lancaster Sheriff’s Station Captain Pat Nelson.

“If you are caught driving, either under the influence of alcohol or drugs, you will be arrested, you will be prosecuted,” said Nelson. “This is a preventable tragedy, and folks need to stop and think before they get behind the wheel of a car. There are plenty of alternatives.”

“We actually need the residents to help us in the fight to make the roads safer for everyone,” said California Highway Patrol Lieutenant Rob Lunn. “Part of that responsibility is you call 9-1-1. Quite often we end up making arrests as a result of that 9-1-1 call when somebody suspects that a driver is DUI.”

In the CHP’s jurisdiction within the Antelope Valley, there were 144 DUI collisions that resulted in 97 injuries and four lives lost in 2012, Lunn said.

“Don’t get in a car with someone you think has been drinking,” Lunn said. “If you are sober, what you can do is offer to drive, or you can take a taxi or get another ride. Whatever you do, don’t get in that car.”

The group closed the press conference with a prayer for safety.

The group closed the press conference with a prayer for safety.

Community activist Dr. Miguel Coronado, who organized the press conference, said he’s hoping the message will sink in with residents so tragedies like Destiny Tennison’s can be avoided in the future.

“When something like this occurs, it hurts everybody and sends a ripple effect of negativity that we need to stop,” Coronado said. “Hopefully by bringing this awareness to the community, we can do something to stop this madness that’s happening in our streets.”

“Destiny was a blessing in our community, a blessing to this family,” said local NAACP President V. Jesse Smith, in closing the event with prayer. “Whatever we do at this point, give us the strength and the courage to do it to save lives, to send a message to people that drinking and driving is simply wrong.”

The family of Destiny Tennison will be organizing future fundraisers aimed at creating a scholarship in her name, Rosa Tennison said.

Editor’s Note: We will be updating this story with information on how to donate to the family of Destiny Tennison.

Related articles:

Driver charged in DUI crash that killed passenger

Passenger killed in suspected DUI crash

  25 comments for “Officers, activists join mourning family in message against drunk driving

  1. jay jay
    April 3, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    What do u call someone that caused a person to lose her life???

    A murderer!!!! Yes!!

  2. J. Ripper
    March 25, 2013 at 10:20 am

    Where were the kids when they were driving in the car together?

    • ????
      March 26, 2013 at 10:09 pm

      With destinys mom

      • selfish people
        April 6, 2013 at 2:07 pm

        They were with there grandmother and aunts (destinys mom and sisters) the only grabdmother. And aunts who was in there life every birthday every holiday now they will be there again soon its rediculous they have to take those kids from a family that they have only known there whole life NOW WHOS SELFISH

  3. March 23, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    the were not on their way to walmart they were on their way to his house!

    • J. Ripper
      March 25, 2013 at 10:20 am

      Does it matter?

      • kandie
        March 27, 2013 at 6:54 pm

        umm yea theyre making it seem like destiny wasnt with him cuz she wanted to but because she had to

        • selfish people
          April 6, 2013 at 2:16 pm

          Doesnt matter were they were going your very annoying why dont you shut up and keep quiet pretty sure everyone agrees you always have something to say and all of it is worthless annoying and taking up space here so keep your worthless to since to yourself no one cares about your opinion you werent there so zip it and as for tge babys there all that matter is for tgem to be with a responsible person and they will be there soon and i dont care about your response so dont waste your time

  4. sanadia
    March 22, 2013 at 3:53 pm

    Sadly, there are many people drinking and driving; I see them all the time and hurry home for safety. I take walks by light pole and feel sad for the mother that lost her life.

  5. Lola
    March 22, 2013 at 3:38 pm

    If this story is correct, and the guy was the father of her children, then they had a long term relationship, so she had to know he was drunk when she got in the car with him. She bears responsibility as well. How sad for two young children who have no control over the situation or their futures.

    • Letlow
      March 22, 2013 at 3:42 pm

      What exactly is your point? What joy do you get for commenting that a dead young mother bears responsibility for her death?? Time and place for everything…

    • QHResident
      March 22, 2013 at 3:54 pm

      Her own mother said the same thing…“If there’s anything you can get from this, it’s don’t get in the car with someone who’s been drinking,” Rosa Tennison continued.

      • March 23, 2013 at 7:30 pm

        yes there had been previous times when he was drunk and she would drive his car so idk what happened his time but andrew is not a murderer ..i cant believe they are still saying this

        • Janice
          March 24, 2013 at 12:14 am

          I find that hard to believe. Because being a friend of both of the families. I know that Destiny drove his car twice while they were in a relationship. Neither one of these times she drove the car was Andres present. I am very hurt that she has left this world. She was very beautiful and determind in this life. Sadly she was tooking away. Andres i also pray for you. But if this is what you are being charged with then you and everyone close to you should accept the punishment. It’s sad to see people slandering the victims. With all this going on it only makes it harder for both sides of the families to morn.

        • rudy balladarez
          March 24, 2013 at 8:57 pm

          @,,kandie,thanks for not saying anything bad about my primo Andrew, he was and is a good man, yes its sad we lost some one,but his kids need him please pray every one, ,forgive to be forgiven, do. Judge, ,who has never drink n drive, every one has, ,remember every one did or do drive drunk so y judge we just didn’t get in trouble

          • QHResident
            March 25, 2013 at 8:46 am

            Everyone does not drink and drive. That attitude is unacceptable and if that is what he was taught then maybe that’s why he thought it was okay to do it. I’m glad he did’nt hit another car and kill other people.

          • kandie
            March 27, 2013 at 7:02 pm

            @ rudy problem g andrew is my best boi im friends with his family and i will stand up for him no matter what,what they charged him for is bull.s. hes not a murderer hes a great person who wouldn’t hurt anyone purposely and we all know that … Andrew we love you theres alot of ppl by your side and were gonna remain by your side..and ignore all the lies and rumors those things dont matter we know the truth so f everything negative that has to be said …and i didnt know destiny personally but i hurd alot of her nd for what i hurd she was a good person so r.i.p to her .

    • just me
      March 22, 2013 at 3:58 pm

      I am sure she got into the car knowing he had been drinking….that in itself is wrong, she lost her life because she got into the car, just thank God, she did not have her kids with her, and he was drinking he had no business behind the wheel of anything….this is very tragic for all involve!!!!!!!!!

    • aunt
      March 22, 2013 at 8:52 pm

      To get the story straight he was a dead beat father they were not in a relationship think before u speak ty love u baby girl miss u everyday love u

      • March 23, 2013 at 8:10 pm

        these kinds of comments is why his mom doesnt want the babys around like that right now because if things like dead beat father, ass hole,and murderer are being said on the internet meaning world wide to see then why would she doubt they wont be said to the babys smh why cant everyone just chill and get thru their own pain without the mess talking

        • rudy balladarez
          March 24, 2013 at 9:03 pm

          Ther low life’s that all my cousin was no low life he took good care of his kids he even work to give them whatever they needed

          • J. Ripper
            March 25, 2013 at 10:18 am

            Wow. He “even work to give them whatever they needed.” How commendable. In fact, isn’t that a basic requirement of being a parent?

        • Tam
          March 25, 2013 at 7:56 pm

          @kandie you sure do have a lot say when you don’t know [removed]. It pretty bad that you keep opening your mouth and talking crap. If it was destiny driving and andrew was the one to die. What would u call her? Everyone has opinion about what is going on and the way I see it it is none of your damn business.and I don’t give a damn if andrew was your friend or boyfriend either way. And I really don’t care what you have to say about him. You all keep fighting back and forth and what good is it getting anyone. I don’t know andrew but I do know my family and distinty was my family. I won’t put what she told me. On here because I have more respect for her then to do that. I’m sick of seeing all this crap on here. Just let it go already distiny is never coming back. And andrew is going away for a long time. STOP ALL THIS BULL [removed]. STOP ALL THE DAMN HATE. IT TAKE A BIGGER PERSON TO FOR GIVE SOMEONE WHO MADE A MISSTAKE. AND ROSA AND DISTINY SISTERS HAVE FORGIVEN HIM. So please just stop with all this bull.

          • kandie
            March 27, 2013 at 7:54 pm

            first of all lady im not coming at u wrong so dont come at me wrong and if it wouldve been andrew dead and destiny driving all i would do is hope hes resting in heaven nd that they enjoyed theyre last beer together :) i wouldnt try and say nothing bad about her cuz i would understand that it was andrews choice to get in the car and no where near am i talking mierda bout anyone okay ive been saying to stop arguing and just do the best for the kids i havent offended anyone so read my [removed] comments before u go off talking bout im talking [removed] and im his gf ? wtf talking sh*t is ppl calling him an ahole worthless parent and a women beater not to mention i was reading comments between two ppl and in one of them someone and i quote “hahaha he got what he deserves” ,now that is considered talking mess, have i insulted anyone or laughed at their? no so read before u accuse me of that ..i have faith that god knows what hes doing when something happens to someone god decides wether u go or not if he decides to take u that means he needs another angel so destiny is with him now… as for andrew he couldve taken him too but didnt there has to be a reason to that,and andrew doing time we’re gonna take it as time for him to get better and become and even better person than what he already is to come out and be the best father he can for the babys god too will do the best for them whatever it is we will accept gods choice..andrew we all love you to all friends and family have faith something good will happen ;
            Matthew 17:20
            He said to them, “Because of your little faith. For truly I say to you, if you have faith the the size of a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you.

          • James
            April 5, 2013 at 11:07 am

            Oh brother, dude committed a crime. Now he has to do the time.

Comments are closed.