A statewide conference announcing Arizona’s annual holiday DUI crackdown was recently held at the state capital in Phoenix. The conference was attended by law enforcement officers and state officials including the director of the Office of Highway Safety, the director of the Department of Public Safety and the Maricopa County Sheriff. Representatives from several anti-drunk driving organizations, such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), also attended.
To avoid being stopped or arrested, Maricopa County Attorney, Bill Montgomery, advised people who have been drinking not to drive but call a taxi or friend instead. He also advised people to designate a friend as a driver when they go out together. The friend will agree not to drink for the evening in order to safely drive the others home. In his public statement, Mr. Montgomery also reminded everyone that a DUI conviction means “You will spend time in jail.”
In the state of Arizona, between 2010 and 2011, the number of traffic stops more than tripled. Traffic stops in 2010 were 228,146. They number of stops jumped to 702,921 in 2011. Drunk driving arrests also increased, but they did not even double. They went from 19,482 in 2010 to 31,561 in 2011. As of early December 2013, 637,776 traffic stops had been made this year. Out of those stops, 22,330 resulted in arrests for DUIs.
The holiday DUI enforcement program is funded by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and was lauded by many officials throughout the state of Arizona who attended the conference. The chief of the Phoenix Fire Department praised the program for its emphasis on prevention.
It is important to note that just because someone has been arrested and charged with a DUI offense does not mean they are guilty of the charge. There are many defenses to such a charge and many times, mistakes are made on the part of law enforcement.
If you are caught up in the holiday enforcement program and are charged with a DUI, you need the services of an attorney who will investigate your case and evaluate all possible defenses. Contact us as soon as possible. We can help.