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2019-02-06 / News

More Than 200 Arrested for Drunk Driving during Holiday Crackdown

Officers from nearly 100 police departments, sheriff’s offices and Michigan State Police (MSP) posts increased patrols across the state during the recent Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over crackdown December 13 - 31 looking for impaired drivers.

“If you’re impaired by any substance you shouldn’t drive,” said Michael L. Prince, Office of Highway Safety Planning (OHSP) director. “Motorists were asked to make responsible decisions as they celebrated the holidays and have a plan in place to get home safely. Unfortunately, the holidays were not a merry occasion for everyone.”

Preliminary reports indicate officers made 8,674 traffic stops, arrested 204 drunk drivers, issued 883 speeding citations and issued 84 child restraint citations. In addition, officers made 93 felony arrests during the enforcement period.

Locally the Sault Ste. Marie Post made four arrests during this time period for impaired driving-related offenses.

In one instance, a trooper from the MSP Marshall Post stopped a vehicle for suspected drunk driving. In the process of removing the driver from vehicle the officer noticed a large caliber handgun on the driver. Both the handgun and the driver’s sweatshirt had blood on them from an unknown source.

Later that day the Battle Creek Fire Department responded to an active residential fire and discovered a deceased person inside who had been shot multiple times and died before the fire started.

Upon investigation it was determined that the driver stopped for suspicion of drunk driving committed the homicide with the weapon found inside the vehicle. The person is currently in custody on several felony charges.

In another instance officers from the Allegan County Sheriff’s Office responded to a call for a wrong-way driver on US- 131, which led to a pursuit. The driver was arrested on felony drunk driving charges and driving on a suspended license.

In Michigan it is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher, although motorists can be arrested at any BAC level if an officer believes they are impaired. Michigan’s drunk driving law contains a zero-tolerance provision for drivers with certain illegal drugs in their system. The same penalties for drunk driving also apply to those convicted under the zero-tolerance drug provision.

The Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign was supported with federal traffic safety funds coordinated by the OHSP.

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