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Four citations, but no arrests during DUI checkpoint

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Posted: Sunday, January 27, 2013 6:01 pm

No one was arrested during Saturday night’s DUI/driver’s license checkpoint in the 100 block of South Cherokee Lane, according to Lodi police.

The Lodi Police Department’s traffic unit checked the drivers of 410 vehicles between 7 p.m. Saturday and 2:30 a.m. Sunday. Four citations were issued, three vehicles were towed away and four were cited for being unlicensed or driving with a suspended license.

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  • Dave Raines posted at 11:04 am on Mon, Jan 28, 2013.

    dave Posts: 8

    By law, they must be set up in places with higher concentrations of DUI crashes and arrests, not near what you, or they, find convenient. It has to be data driven. And they must keep the line of cars moving, so during times of heavy traffic, they can't check every one, but have to set a specific number, like every third, fourth or fifth one, to keep people from being overly burdened. And, when they see a violation such as child safety seat, brake light, etc., they have to at the very least give a warning. Otherwise they aren't doing their job and could be held liable.

    And when you compare DUI Checkpoints vs. DUI Saturation Patrols you see two different tactics with two different expected outcomes.

    Saturation patrols are meant to catch active drunks, get them off the streets and prosecute them. Checkpoints are highly visible, highly publicized events meant to deter drinking and driving in the first place.

    Saturation patrols have little deterrent value, but high enforcement value. Checkpoints have been shown to have the potential to lower DUI fatality rates by up to 26 percent by virtue of their deterrence. People go through them, drive past them, hear about them via multiple grapevines and get the ongoing impression that drunk driving is dangerous, socially unacceptable, and that law enforcement is actively looking for it.

    They are both good tactics and both should be in the arsenal of DUI combating tactics, along with others. In terms of catching drunks, nothing beats patrols (both regular and saturation). In terms of saving lives, nothing beats checkpoints.

  • Doug Chaney posted at 10:01 am on Mon, Jan 28, 2013.

    advocate Posts: 502

    What a waste of overtime and manpower. Why don't they stage these checkpoints based around the downtown area where downtown is overloaded with alcohol consuming/selling businesses? Or better yet, use those funds on impaired saturation patrols? And using multi agency law enforcement rather than just LPD, who have been rumored to issue certain groups of people a free pass, kind of like the Old chief Hansen "get out of jail free" cards. Oh, I forgot, those saturation patrols don't generate big overtime nor minor traffic traffic citations resulting in fines for the city coffers and LPD, not to mention big time losses to those lucky six tow/impound companies that used to get as many as thirty tows in an evening and less than three dui/impaired arrests. I notice the number of spiffy, new tow vehicles has drastically decreased in town since the new laws went into effect allowing a licensed driver to retrieve the vehicle within a certain time frame. A new law, AB 2129 now allows undocumented immigrants to be able to qualify for a CA drivers' license, which will further decrease the amount of drivers being ticketed?towed? impounded for simply being unlicensed, in my opinion. Maybe the sheriff's department or CHP could declare "martial law" in Lodi and stage both the DUI/license checkpoints and saturation patrols. I'd bet my mortgage that the jail here would remain full with outside law enforcement involved alone. And the least LPD could do is screen EVERY vehicle instead every fourth one or whatever it is. All checkpoints I've ever been through do just that, tricking the driver into rolling their window down so they can stick that flashlight/alcohol detector in your vehicle. Some vehicles are screened for merely having a taillight or headlight out or some visible fixit defect that is questionable and spotted in line at the checkpoint by the supposed "inspector" that is constantly moving cones and going up and down the line of vehicles supposedly looking for such defects as well as looking inside all vehicles for suspicious behavior and interior defects, no car seats for children, etc. and mark them for screening The real purpose of screening every vehicle was to also distribute literature on the consequences of driving impaired. Why doesn't LPD use this system of screening all vehicles instead of those they seem to sometimes hand pick out of order? I've observed three of these checkpoints and there doesn't seem to be a particular in which vehicles are chosen and most screened and arrested/ cited seem to be minorities. The location of these checkpoints is also suspect to me, most being on the eastside and not coinciding with the many wine busts and well attended alcohol driven events, not to mention the monthly downtown wine strolls which has over/imbibers operating a vehicle to get from one venue to another, and seemingly the least used streets that lead to the major routes and freeways. To me these look like nothing but the old time speed traps under the guise of DUI checkpoints that are twisted to include traffic violations, which seem to arrest/cite mostly minorities, with Hispanics being the majority of those. It's time for change to get serious about dui/impaired driving and stop fretting about losing one's job for merely arresting on of the Lodi area elite or a wealthy over imbibing tourist.

  • Dave Raines posted at 9:00 am on Mon, Jan 28, 2013.

    dave Posts: 8

    Robert, can you cite hard evidence of what you assert? Police departments get little to nothing from the tickets they write. The courts get the lion's share. Are you against them catching people with their license suspended for DUI, getting ticketed and having their car towed?

  • Robert Jacobs posted at 7:52 am on Mon, Jan 28, 2013.

    Robert Jacobs Posts: 298

    Like I've continually said, this is what usually transpires at these so-called DUI check points. They tow, cite and arrest (although in this case no arrests were made) its about money for law enforcement and catching everyone and anyone doing something illegal. Even though the Courts have said any other check point (other than DUI) is illegal. But the police as usual do what ever they please and what they can get away with!



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