Orange County law enforcement agencies have been aggressively tackling the DUI problem for several years now, pushing for more saturation and grants for DUI checkpoints. Officers on foot patrol have also been put in place in an effort to, according to officials, help intoxicated individuals get rides home.
According to the Office of Traffic and Safety, in 2011 Huntington Beach was number 1 out of 56 California Cities, with alcohol-related collisions. More recently, The State Office of Traffic and Safety has once again released information suggesting that Huntington Beach has the most alcohol-related crashes in California.
The Huntington Beach Police Department has complained that there is one bar in particular being linked to excessive drunk driving arrests. According to authorities, within a 22- month period, 72 individuals were arrested for driving under the influence after leaving this particular bar. There are two other bars in Huntington Beach that come in second and third as being linked to the most arrests for DUI in Orange County.
Obviously, these particular establishments are being watched by law enforcement agencies. There are officers who are trained as DUI specialists, trained to seek out drivers who are drinking and driving. So if they know that a particular bar has been linked to several dui related accidents that is where they will be waiting and watching.
Other top ranking cities were Costa Mesa, City of Orange, Fullerton, Mission Viejo, Irvine and Garden Grove. In 2010, Huntington Beach was ranked at number 16 and Santa Ana was the top ranked Orange County City at number 8. Newport Beach and Fullerton were also mentioned in the ranking.
All Orange County law enforcement agencies beef up their DUI campaigns during the holidays. This year, during the 4th of July holiday, the “Avoid the 38″ crackdown on DUI was expanded from Wednesday through Sunday, because the Fourth of July fell on a Thursday. This resulted in 240 arrests for being made for allegedly driving under the influence. The “Avoid the 38” name refers to the 38 law enforcement agencies in Orange County.
In other counties, such as Sacramento, law enforcement agencies have begun sending under cover officers into bars, posing as patrons, and looking for people who appear to be intoxicated. They follow them out to their car, and once they get in and drive away, they call officers who are waiting in marked police cars and give them the description of the vehicle and the individual. The officers in the marked cars then locate the car and proceed to pull them over and arrest them.
Whether it is a DUI checkpoint or a roving patrol, there is no doubt that arresting officers make mistakes. Breathalyzers and field sobriety tests are unreliable in that the breathalyzers results are easily manipulated and the field sobriety tests are strictly subjective. Although the officers who conduct the roving saturation patrols are “trained to look for signs of impairment”, they are not experts; they are human beings capable of making mistakes and misjudging.
Anyone who has been arrested for a DUI should contact an experienced DUI Defense Attorney. A good Orange County Criminal Defense Attorney, specializing in DUI’s will examine the stop, the tests administered and the details surrounding the arrest to determine whether or not the arresting agency followed proper procedures.
If you would like to know more about driving under the influence, contact Orange County Criminal Defense Attorney William Weinberg at his Irvine, CA office at 949-474-8008 or at www.williamweinberg.com.