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Traffic checkpoint nets DWI arrests

AHOSKIE – Four motorists learned the hard way that it’s not wise to drink and drive.

The Ahoskie Police Department conducted a “Booze It and Lose It” campaign here Friday night into early Saturday morning. The traffic checkpoint, set-up on US 13 on the northern edge of town, netted four DWI (Driving While Impaired) arrests.

“We are making each and every effort to keep impaired drivers off the road,” Dan Flores, Ahoskie Police Traffic Enforcement Officer, said. “All we can ask of the motoring public is simply that if you do choose to drink, please act responsibly and pre-designate a sober individual to drive you home or make arrangements to stay where you are overnight. Don’t endanger the lives of innocent people by making the wrong choice.”

Officer Flores called the four-hour campaign very successful. In addition to the DWI arrests, citations were issued to four drivers for child restraint violations; two were charged with driving while license were revoked; and one was cited for having no operator’s license.

Additionally, law enforcement officers wrote citations for expired registration, expired inspection and made one arrest for disorderly conduct.

Joining the Ahoskie Police Department were lawmen with the Hertford County Sheriff’s Office and the North Carolina State Highway Patrol.

“On behalf of the Ahoskie Police, I’d like to thank (Hertford County) Sheriff Juan Vaughan for sending his deputies to assist us as well as thanking First Sgt. Todd Lane of the Highway Patrol for the assistance of one of his troopers,” Flores said.

“The reason we conduct these checkpoints is to reduce the number of accidents and fatalities associated with drinking and driving,” Ahoskie Police Chief Troy Fitzhugh said. “I commend my officers for a job well done and offer my appreciation to all the officers involved. Their efforts are unified as we perform our tasks of making the highways safe for the motoring public.”

Traffic checking stations are part of the Governor’s Highway Safety Program. The “Booze It & Lose It” campaign zeros in on drunken drivers with innovative and extensive anti-driving while impaired enforcement and education. That program Sobriety checkpoints are continually set up in all North Carolina counties as part of the state’ s highly effective anti-drunk driving campaign.

One of the state’s six mobile breath-alcohol testing units, better known as BATMobiles, was in use at the Ahoskie checkpoint. Those vehicles are used to increase the efficiency of on-site DWI processing. Each BATMobile is equipped with workstations for Intoxilyzer 5000 breath test instruments, cellular telephones, computers, officers’ workstations, magistrates’ work area, lavatory, DWI checkpoint signs, traffic cones, traffic vests, search batons, screening tests devices and all other necessary equipment and supplies for processing DWI suspects.

Two Hertford County Magistrates used the BATMobile to process the DWI arrests made at the checking station.

Officer Flores added that two other DWI arrests were made over the weekend in Ahoskie, one each on Saturday and Sunday.