The city of Tustin will conduct a sobriety checkpoint in an undisclosed location on May 9, 2014 from 8 pm to 3 am. According to the press release, specially trained officers will be looking for signs of alcohol and drug impairment while also checking for proper licensing of motorists. According to a MADD information sheet on the operation of checkpoints, stops are performed in a set pattern designed to eliminate racial profiling and speeding the process.
The primary goal of a DUI checkpoint is not to arrest drunk drivers, but to deter impaired driving. According to MADD, research shows that money invested in conducting checkppoints results in massive savings to communities from alcohol related crashes.
The Tustin PD calls drunk driving a crime and we agree. Last year, Lat year, over 700 people in California died due to impaired driving. Thousands more were injured. Add to that the cost of to a family when a member is arrested for drunk driving. Typical costs for a first time offender can exceed $10,000 when including higher insurance and related “hidden” costs. It can also affect one’s reputation and job.
And, don’t think you can avoid the DUI patrols by leaving town. The Orange County Sheriffs Department will be conducting saturation patrols in South County this weekend as well. Citing a rise in DUI related deaths, OCSD says there were 57 DUI related deaths in their areas of operation in 2012. Saturation patrols will commence at 7 pm Friday, April 25 to 3 am Saturday, April 26.
Funding for these programs are from a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. If you see a drunk driver, call 9-1-1 (but do it from a handsfree phone if you are driving).
Law Enforcement Phone Scams Soliciting Money
YORBA LINDA, CA – (November 19, 2013) – The Orange County Sheriff’s Department advises the public to be aware of phone scams involving subjects pretending to be law enforcement personnel. Several instances of this type of fraud have been occurring throughout Orange County.
On Tuesday, October 29 a male subject, fraudulently identifying himself as Lieutenant Mike Stevens with the Orange County Warrant Division, called Lorraine Johnson, 69, of Yorba Linda, and told her that an arrest warrant had been issued for her failure to appear in court on a traffic citation. Stevens told her the violation was captured by a traffic camera in Yorba Linda. He also told the victim there was a glitch in the system and the notice to appear in court was never mailed to her. Stevens told her the bail amount was $365 and that he could help her pay her bail. Stevens instructed Johnson to purchase a “MoneyPak” card and provide the card number to him so he could pay her bail. He also advised the victim to stay on the phone with him while she purchased the card just in case she was pulled over by a police officer. He said he could explain to the officer what she was doing so that she would not be arrested on the warrant.
A more recent case in Laguna Hills involved a victim being contacted on his cell phone and advised that he owed back taxes to the IRS. The caller fraudulently identified himself as Assistant Sheriff Mark Billings with the Orange County Sheriff’s Department and stated that he was working with the IRS to collect the debt. The caller told the victim that if he did not purchase $4000 in “MoneyPak” cards and give him the numbers, the SWAT team would be forced to raid his home and arrest him. The caller ID number on the phone call fraudulently indicated the call was coming from the Orange County Sheriff’s Department’s non-emergency phone number.
The public is advised that the Orange County Sheriff’s Department does not solicit by phone. If anyone receives similar, suspicious calls do not give out any personal information such as social security number, bank account numbers, etc. and report the call to the Sheriff’s Department at (714) 647-7000 .