Cinco de Mayo is one of those holidays where law enforcement say it sees a real spike in people driving under the influence.
To prevent that, police in San Diego, National City and Oceanside have all confirm setting up D-U-I saturation patrols… which means more officers on the road looking for anything suspicious.
It sounds good but it is important to know what exactly is a Saturation Patrol.
Law Enforcement is utilizing “Saturation Patrols” rather than sobriety checkpoints more often. It helps beef up police presence and ultimately brings in ample revenue due to increased traffic citations given. DUI saturation greatly affect the members of the impacted community both good and bad (and usually without their knowledge). An initial analysis of a good DUI defense is to find out whether the officer was on patrol as part of a DUI saturation detail.
So what exactly is a “DUI Saturation Patrol”?
Definition: Saturation patrols involve law enforcement deploying additional police officers to targeted roadways during select time periods to detect and apprehend impaired drivers.
Law Enforcement Perspective – Primary MIssion of San Diego DUI Saturation Patrols: The primary focus for officers during Santee saturation patrols is to find impaired drivers by observing changes in driving behaviors. The behaviors most often assessed are: lane deviation, following too closely, and/or speeding. The intention of this heavier police presence is to increase motorists’ perception that they will be arrested if they drive drunk. Saturation patrols are legal and do not present many legal issues beyond those associated with routine traffic stops. Measured in arrests per working hour, these blanket patrols are viewed by some as the most effective method of apprehending drunken drivers. Many police departments favor them over sobriety checkpoints for their effectiveness, reduced staffing, and the comparative ease of operating saturation patrols.
Reality: In practice, DUI Saturation comes with a price for the people who live in the saturated community. This includes people who live in the Santee community. Why? Because in San Diego DUI saturation, investigations officers are looking to make a traffic stop for the slightest violation To them, that observation is their first sign of possible impairment. Instead of an objective analysis of their observations, EVERY action a vehicle makes outside the norm is possibly due to impairment. When they approach the drivers window, they are not going to contact the driver and note observations that may show impairment, but are approaching with a “tell me why you are NOT DUI” mentality. More drivers in Point Loma get detained and investigated when in most other instances they would not. Furthermore, San Diego DUI saturation patrols result in more tickets for Santee drivers. The police will stop you for rolled stop signs, no seatbelt, a slight drift in the other lane, and other infractions that police may normally drive by in other community.
So what does this mean?: In exchange for less DUIs on the street, the citizens of Santee will have to endure more stops by police. More in the San Diego community will have to go through DUI evaluation and Field Sobriety tests even when they are not impaired because the police are looking to arrest. While the saturation patrols are legal, the citizens of San Diego will ultimately get more traffic tickets than other communities because the police are looking to stop you for the slightest traffic violation. That is the purpose those officers are on patrol that day….it is their mandate and mindset…to them it is their first clue to a DUI. This means the San Diego community may be safer because more DUI drivers will be stopped….but at what price?
So, next time you are driving down the street and see a heavy police presence. Some of the officers are just on normal patrol….while others are there just looking for you to make the slightest traffic infraction to give them the reason to pull you over and conduct a DUI investigation. Be prepared.
But officials say there is only so much they can do… the real responsibility falls on the drinkers and the drivers.
If you are going out tonight have a solid plan for getting home that includes a sober driver.
And now a days with so many services like cabs, UBER and LYFT… there is no excuse to get behind the wheel after drinking.
All of those options are a whole lot cheaper than getting a D-U-I.. which cost on average of 10-thousand dollars.
And just remember.. “BUZZED DRIVING IS DRUNK DRIVING”
THE full article can be found here.
If you are charged with a San Diego DUI or other Criminal offense, you need to call our firm immediately. We are available to take action on your case today. Please email or call us at 858-751-4384 or email me at [email protected] to schedule a free consultation. The key is to be proactive.