Raising Awareness, Saving Lives, Building a Safer Community

Our Mission & Vision

The mission of the Laramie County DUI Victim Impact Panel Council is to increase awareness of the tragic consequences of driving under the influence. We achieve this through:

Victim Impact Panels

presented to schools, driver education classes, community organizations, and the general public, including those ordered to attend by the Court.

Support For Organizations And Individuals

dedicated to preventing driving under the influence by collaborating on initiatives, sharing resources, and providing a platform for voices impacted by DUI to be heard.

Public Service Announcements

that highlight the dangers of DUI, share real stories from victims and their families, and provide information on preventing drunk driving. These announcements aim to reach a broad audience through various media and local events, to educate and influence behavior change in our community.

Our ultimate goal is to eradicate the offense of driving under the influence and eliminate all the harm that comes from such actions.
Handcuffing a young man
Police pulling over vehicle on the streets

Our History

In 1993, Shirley Martinez was hired as the Victim Assistance Coordinator for the Cheyenne Police Department, bringing her experience from Rawlins, Wyoming, where she helped start one of the first two Victim Impact Panels in the state. In response to two fatal DUI crashes involving young people, she collaborated with the Laramie County District Attorney’s Office and Pathfinders to form the first DUI Victim Impact Panel in Cheyenne. Since its first meeting on June 26, 1995, the panel has been held bi-monthly and continues to educate DUI offenders on the devastating impact of drunk driving through powerful testimonials from affected families. Shirley’s dedication and the courageous stories shared by victims have undoubtedly contributed to saving many lives.

Attendee Comments

Board Members

Don Heiduck


On the board since 2008

Duane Ellis

Vice President

John Pederson


Laura Griffith


Donna Black


Assisting with the panel since the first meeting in 1995

Members at Large

Heather Heiduck
Pam Allsop
Salli Perryman

A Message from Our Founder

Together with the Coordinator of the Task Force in Fremont County, we began networking on what a panel would look like since this had not been previously attempted in Wyoming. Following some of the criteria from Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), I researched traffic accident reports at the Highway Patrol, Police Department, and Sheriff’s Department. There were no victim advocates in law enforcement or in prosecutor’s offices at the time, so finding individuals who might be willing to share their stories in front of a room full of DUI offenders was difficult. I contacted many families who had never had a victim advocate after they lost a loved one or were injured themselves due to a drunk driving crash. This process was daunting for me and painful for the families to relive their loss. When I started working at the Cheyenne Police Department, and after responding to two DUI crashes where young people were killed, I felt we needed to start a panel in Cheyenne to raise awareness of this national, state and local problem. I contacted the Victim Witness Coordinator from the Laramie County District Attorney’s Office and one of the counselors from Pathfinders. Together we formed the first DUI Victim Impact Panel in Cheyenne which was held on June 26th, 1995 at LCCC. The panels continue every other month to this day, and the local courts and probation officers continue to send DUI offenders. The hope has always been that in listening to the impact drunk driving crashes has had on the mothers, fathers, siblings and children speaking on the panel, that

those in the audience will make a better choice when faced with the decision of getting behind the wheel of a vehicle after they have been drinking. I have no doubt that the brave individuals who have shared their painful experiences and the many individuals it takes to keep the panel active after all these years have saved many lives.”


Shirley Martinez

Founder and first Coordinator
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