“Drive Hammered… Get Nailed” is a slogan that’s been echoed by Arizona Law enforcement this holiday season. It’s no secret that DUI arrests tend to spike over the holidays.
We glossed over this a little bit in our previous blog, talking about the rise in drivers on the roads and harsh crackdowns by Arizona law enforcement. Not to mention, it’s during this time that the Arizona DUI task forces are on the move with a mission to arrest as many offenders as possible.
On December 4th, the Arizona DUI Task Force hosted a “Kick Off Event” to declare the revving up of their holiday DUI enforcement. This means that you can expect thousands of eager law enforcement officers ready to crack down on drunk drivers.
The DUI Task Forces around our community aren’t your typical task forces. In fact, our East Valley DUI Task Force is one of the largest programs in the country. It’s made up of multiple law enforcement agencies that flood the streets ready to stop drivers for minor traffic violations.
Even if you’re not driving aggressively, you could be at risk for a stop. For instance, they could stop you for not wearing a seatbelt, having a headlight out or forgetting to use a turn signal. They’re looking for any reason to have face-to-face contact with you and give the officer a means to look for signs of insobriety.
Besides looking for traffic violations, our Arizona DUI task forces will host an upsurge of sobriety checkpoints. This is new and may cause a host of problems if they are not set up properly. That is another blog. This holiday season, the forces will pull out all the stops to catch drunk drivers. In fact, Tempe, AZ police have divulged that they have three new DUI enforcement vehicles. They purchased unmarked SUVs, so drunk drivers will be taken by surprise and won’t be able to detect law enforcement.
They will have command posts setup in various parking lots around the area. These posts will consist of large vans and revamped mobile homes, where licensed phlebotomists will be on duty to take blood samples. This will cut out the need to take the DUI suspects to the hospital and post-pone sobriety tests.
The command posts will also save the officer’s time, who can then hit the road quickly after arrests to catch more offenders. There will be a judge on duty, who will be ready to sign faxed search warrants, should a suspect refuse breath and blood tests.
As you can see, the DUI task forces are playing hardball this year. On Labor Day weekend alone, the program made over 282 DUI arrests in Arizona. On top of that, they made 74 “extreme DUI charges,” in which the blood-alcohol content of the driver was higher than .15 percent. Another 223 citations were given for seat-belt violations alone. So, as you can see, they’re highly effective at catching perpetrators.
The holiday DUI task force wants to report arrests and keep the streets safe from drunk drivers. While there are a lot of DUI arrests during the holidays, the conviction rate for these arrests aren’t necessarily high.
Although, law enforcement is working on making conviction rates higher by setting up command posts and having a judge ready to sign warrants. If you’ve been caught driving under the influence, there are some measures you should take to help reduce your punishment:
Until next time, stay safe these holidays and avoid run-ins with the task force by designating a driver. If you’re already dealing with DUI charges, contact the Weingart Firm for a free consultation at 480-897-8737. The sooner you speak with us, the sooner we can start processing and analyzing your case to determine the best plan of action to get your DUI charges dropped or lessened.