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June 5, 2013
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Eagle County Sheriff’s Office reports

2013 Memorial Day impaired driving crashes on the rise

According to preliminary reports, there were 318 DUI arrests and five alcohol-related car crashes that occurred during the Colorado Department of Transportation’s Memorial Day DUI enforcement period resulting in six fatalities – an increase in fatalities from this time last year.

DUI arrests are down from 542 DUI arrests last year made statewide during the Memorial Day Weekend enforcement period.

“Law enforcement was out on the roads to reduce the number of impaired drivers and to remind Coloradans that if you make the dangerous decision to drive while under the influence of drugs and alcohol, you will get caught,” said Darrell Lingk, Director of the Office of Transportation Safety at CDOT. “Our priority is keeping the roads safe for drivers and it’s unfortunate that 318 people were arrested this weekend for their unsafe acts.”

The 100 deadliest days on Colorado roads began on May 24 and CDOT, the Colorado State Patrol and local law enforcement agencies have increased DUI enforcement to ensure roads stay safe through Labor Day.

“Each year we heighten our enforcement efforts during this holiday and it’s frustrating that so many Coloradans decide to put themselves and others in danger by driving impaired,” said Colonel Scott Hernandez, Chief of the Colorado State Patrol. “The CSP and law enforcement throughout the state will continue conducting sobriety checkpoints and saturation patrols this summer with the expectation that this year the 100 deadliest days on Colorado roads will be safer.”

The Persistent Drunk Driver (PDD) Committee has released the top 10 counties for DUI offenses in 2012: Adams (2,970), Denver (2,932), El Paso (2,738), Arapahoe (2,666), Jefferson (1,790), Weld (1,139), Larimer (1,032), Boulder (1,017), Douglas (862) and Pueblo (671). Statewide statistics on the PDD website show that DUI offenses have decreased over the past year by five percent with 1,321 less offense filings. The website, developed by four state agencies on the PDD Committee, serves as a resource to help Coloradans make safer choices before getting behind the wheel after consuming alcohol or other drugs.

The Heat Is On runs the entire year with 12 specific DUI enforcement periods centered on national holidays and large, public events. More details about the DUI enforcement plans and arrest results can be found at HeatIsOnColorado.com.

The PDD Committee was formed as part of the Persistent Drunk Driver Act of 1998. The committee is made up of the Colorado Department of Transportation, Department of Human Services, State Judicial Branch and the Department of Revenue. The Committee is charged with developing and implementing programs to deter persistent drunk- and drug-related driving, as well as provide public education. A persistent drunk driver is defined as someone with two or more alcohol or drug related driving violations or someone with a BAC of .17 or higher, even if it’s a first offense. For more information on the PDD Committee, visit NoDUIColorado.org.

Home burglary, part I

A trailer home was burglarized at Eagle River Village in Edwards May 3.

The two residents told deputies their doors were locked when they left at 5:30 p.m. that day. Several windows were left open, however. When they returned at 9:30 p.m., a half-empty bottle of beer was sitting on the front porch railing. Inside, they discovered their 2-foot tall hookah, an X-box 360 and a Grand Theft Auto video game were missing. Tobacco ashes from the hookah were dumped on the couch. The total value of the items was about $500.

Neighbors reported seeing a couple cars stop by the trailer home that evening around dark. One vehicle was described as an older model, brown sedan and the other was a small black car with tinted windows. Neither car stayed long.

Home burglary, part II

An Edwards resident on Beard Creek Road reported that a 2-foot tall jar filled with coins was stolen from his kitchen counter while he was away May 14. The house was unlocked at the time. The jar weighed about 50 pounds and was estimated to have almost $2,000 of coins in it.

Deputies investigated one suspect who was using a bike for transportation and tried to deposit a large amount of coins in Eagle shortly after the theft was reported. However, there was no evidence connecting the person to the theft and officers believed it was unlikely that a person would carry 50 pounds of coins from Edwards on a bicycle to deposit them in Eagle.

Illegal dumping

Deputies contacted a 38-year-old Gypsum resident on Apache Drive May 18 for illegal dumping. The man admitted he had been dumping his yard waste in the empty lot next to him, thinking it was OK since no one lived there. Officers told him the lot may be empty but it is still owned by the homeowners association and he would have to clean it up.

The 100 deadliest days on Colorado roads began on May 24 and CDOT, the Colorado State Patrol and local law enforcement agencies have increased DUI enforcement to ensure roads stay safe through Labor Day.


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The VailDaily Updated Jun 5, 2013 09:27PM Published Jun 12, 2013 04:48PM Copyright 2013 The VailDaily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.