Napa police have released the numbers of those arrested during last month’s high-enforcement crackdown on driving under the influence and unlicensed driving.
More than 1.000 drivers were stopped and screened during December at DUI checkpoints, according to Sgt. Paul Paniagua.
From Dec. 1 to Jan. 1, state grant funding allowed law enforcement to put extra patrols on the streets, netting 15 arrests, according to Police Sgt. Paul Paniagua.
In addition to those 14, 15 other drivers were arrested countywide by officers while on routine patrols.
“This same enforcement from mid-December 2010, to January 1, 2011, we had 26 arrests,” he said.
Of the grant-funded arrests, three were at DUI checkpoints and nine were made by officers on special patrols, Paniagua said.
The grant also paid officers’ overtime salaries for warrant sweeps, which garnered two arrests, and a court sting operation, where officers monitor traffic court and if a driver’s license is suspended or revoked by the judge and a defendant leaves the courthouse and drives away in his or her car, they are stopped by police. This resulted in one citation, not arrest, Paniagua said.
The figure of 29 total arrests does not include those made by California Highway Patrol officers.
Paniagua believes the high law enforcement patrols have made a difference.
“At the DUI checkpoints, we see a lot more people coming through with a designated driver. And from December 16 to New Year’s Day, we had no fatal DUI accidents countywide,” Paniagua added.
“I think people are listening and reacting to the dangers and costs of getting a DUI.”
The countywide grant is funded through the state Office of Traffic Safety and overseen by the Napa Police Department.
The grant started last October and will end next Sept. 30,
“We have more DUI, court and warrant sweep operations planned for this year," Paniagua said.