The Gore Range DUI Task Force is joining with law enforcement throughout the nation for the "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" campaign Aug. 17 through Sept. 3.
The Gore Range DUI Task Force said its officers, troopers and deputies will be aggressively looking for impaired drivers during the crackdown and will arrest anyone caught driving impaired.
It is illegal in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico to drive with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 grams per deciliter. Despite these laws, in 2010 more than 10,000 people died in crashes in which a driver or motorcycle rider was impaired.
"On average there is one alcohol impaired driving-related fatality every 51 minutes across America. But this tragic loss of life can be reduced if we get impaired drivers off our roadways," said Sheriff Joe Hoy. "Research has shown that high-visibility enforcement like the 'Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over' campaign reduces alcohol-impaired driving fatalities by as much as 20 percent. By joining this nationwide effort, we will make Eagle County's roadways safer for everyone throughout the Labor Day period."
During the Labor Day weekend in 2010, 147 people were killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes involving drivers or motorcycle riders with BACs of .08 or higher. Of those fatalities, 80 percent occurred from 6 p.m. to 5:59 a.m.
Among 18- to 34-year-old drivers killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes during the 2010 Labor Day weekend, 54 percent were alcohol-impaired.
"Obviously we want to remind everyone that it is illegal to drive impaired, and we hope the campaign will remind people that if they plan on drinking, to never get behind the wheel," said Sheriff Hoy. "But if someone does choose to drive impaired, we will arrest them. No warnings. No excuses."
According to the Gore Range DUI Task Force, violators face jail time, loss of their driver licenses, and steep financial consequences such as higher insurance rates, attorney fees, court costs, lost time at work, and the potential loss of a job. When family, friends and co-workers find out, violators also often face tremendous personal embarrassment.
"Driving impaired is simply not worth the risk. So don't take the chance. Remember, we will be out in force and we will be watching, so 'Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over,'" said Sheriff Hoy.
On July 10, the Eagle County Sheriff's Office received report of a male party who had sexual relations with a 12-year-old.
Detectives found that the sexual relations between the two individuals occurred two years earlier, when the defendant was 17 and the victim was 12.
On Aug. 10, 19-year-old, Nelson J. Orellana of Carbondale, was booked into the Eagle County Detention Facility on two counts of sexual assault on a child and is being held on a $20,000.00 bond. Orellana is illegally in the United States and Immigration Customs Enforcement has placed an immigration detainer on him.
A 59-year-old man called deputies to his Edwards trailer home after his 49-year-old roommate threatened him with a knife on Aug. 3.
The 59-year-old was standing outside when officers arrived. He appeared nervous. He said his roommate had been drinking all day as usual. He was tired of it and asked him to move out. The 49-year-old pulled out a large, silver box cutter and said, "How about I just slit your throat." The man then went into his room and was still there when deputies came.
The officers approached the 49-year-old cautiously since he still had the knife on his belt. The whole area of the house smelled of alcohol and the man was very drunk.
The man said he didn't remember any argument or threatening his roommate. He said they were buds and that the deputies should ask him what happened, since he was sober and would remember.
The 49-year-old was arrested for felony menacing.
A deputy stopped a car for going 80 mph in a 55 mph zone on U.S. Highway 6 in Gypsum on Aug. 4.
The 32-year-old driver didn't have a license and smelled of alcohol. He exhibited other signs of intoxication and said he recently drank six beers.
A boy sitting in the back seat was not wearing a seat belt. He said the man was his father.
The deputy asked the 32-year-old to perform voluntary roadside maneuvers. The man failed some of the tests but didn't complete all of them because another car pulled up and the deputy was concerned for their safety. He arrested the 32-year-old for further investigation of driving under the influence of alcohol.
The man in the other car was the 32-year-old's brother. He said the 32-year-old called him and asked him to come there when he was pulled over.
The boy was released into the custody of his uncle and the 32-year-old was booked into jail for child abuse, DUI, speeding and driving without a license or proof of insurance.
An Avon police officer was driving west on Interstate 70 near Wolcott when he saw headlights coming at him, heading east in the westbound lanes.
He stopped the 27-year-old man and called sheriff's deputies to assist, as he was already transporting a person to the Eagle County Jail.
The 27-year-old admitted he had been drinking and said he was trying to follow GPS instructions. He had no idea he was driving the wrong way on I-70 until the officer stopped him. He was arrested for DUI.
Deputies responded to a report of trespassing on June Creek Road in Edwards on July 27.
The suspects were leaving in a truck when the officers arrived. The deputies ordered the 34-year-old driver out of the car. The driver said he would have to get out on the passenger side since his door was broken.
The driver and the 25-year-old passenger got out. The 25-year-old consistently disobeyed deputies as they told him to stay put. He was argumentative and kept trying to walk away while the officers talked with the 34-year-old. Eventually the 25-year-old was detained in handcuffs and cited for obstructing a peace officer.
• A mountain bike worth $750 was stolen after it was left in front of a bank in Minturn on July 31.
• Several derogatory words were spray painted on various locations throughout Dotsero during the night of July 27.