Update: Poway Checkpoint Part of DUI Crackdown

The number of arrests by CHP officers during the Christmas holiday is up from last year. Five drivers were arrested Friday night in Poway as sheriff’s deputies operate a checkpoint a saturation patrol.

Updated Monday, 2:25 p.m.

The California Highway Patrol issued warnings that they would be on the lookout for drivers that have had too much to drink, but not everyone took their advice. DUI arrests are up significantly from this time last year, both statewide and in Southern California.

CHP officers arrested 889 drivers statewide for suspicion of DUI between 6 p.m. Friday and 6 a.m. Monday. Last year the CHP arrested 658 drivers during the same time span.

In San Diego County, 56 drivers have been arrested for suspicion of DUI, compared to 33 last year, and 53 arrests were reported in Orange County, up from 33 last year. The figures only reflect arrests made by CHP officers.  

Eight people were killed on California roadways during the 60-hour time span, with two deaths reported in San Diego County and none in Orange County.   

In Poway four drivers were arrested by sheriff’s deputies Friday night conducting a saturation patrol that accompanied a DUI/driver’s license checkpoint on Espola Road at Valle Verde.

The checkpoint operated between 7 p.m. and 2 a.m. and resulted in one arrest for a minor suspected of driving under the influence, according to Lt. Jose Sanchez. Approximately 1,069 vehicles passed through the checkpoint and all drivers were contacted by a deputy looking for signs of impairment. Forty-six drivers were sent to a secondary-inspection area, where eight field sobriety tests were given.

Deputies made one arrest for possession of a controlled substance, one arrest for possession of marijuana and two arrests for driving on a suspended license for a prior DUI conviction.

Four citations were issued for driving with a suspended license and five vehicles were towed. 

This article will be updated throughout the weekend.

Rick Mueller December 25, 2011 at 12:33 AM
Joe St. Lucas December 25, 2011 at 02:49 AM
Somebody please explain the law here to me. I thought that the checkpoints were supposed to be legal because they advertized the location ahead of time, so driving through that spot was "acceptance" of knowing about the checkpoint. Yet yesterday the line in the checkpoint story was "Deputies will have a sobriety checkpoint in Poway on Friday." Geesh, that explains a lot, doesn't it? Is there no requirement anymore (or was there ever one) that law enforcement needs to announce the location of the checkpoint ahead of time? And what constitutes an announcement (if required?) Certainly the location was not in the Chieftain, the "official" newspaper of Poway, nor was it in the Poway Patch.
Cindy December 25, 2011 at 03:52 AM
What's the issue here? Why does it matter if they announce or not? If one is doing nothing illegal, then one has nothing to worry about no? Announcing it in the paper doesn't change that fact.
Che Hernandez December 25, 2011 at 07:24 PM
@Cindy. The issue is the Fourth Amendment protection of "unlawful search and seizure" If one is doing nothing illegal, and no probable cause is present then it is argued the sobriety checkpoints are a violation of this right. It's an important protection, so many people are wary that checkpoints in general are the thin edge of the wedge to further erode our liberties.


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