DUI Checkpoints Continue to Waste Tax Payer Moneys (Revised)

Revised:  This past weekend in Riverside, California, the Riverside Police Department conducted a DUI/Driver’s License Checkpoint on Van Buren Boulevard just south of Garfield Street between the hours of 8 p.m. on Friday, December 13, and 2 a.m. December 14.

CheckpointThe Press Enterprise Newspaper reported that of the 1,423 vehicles that went through the Riverside checkpoint, only 5 drivers were arrested for suspicion of DUI.  That’s about 3/10 of a percent of the total vehicles that were detained and questioned.

In Lake Elsinore, California a similar checkpoint was conducted by the Lake Elsinore Police Department from 6 p.m. Friday, December 13, to 1 a.m.  December 14 at the intersection of Riverside and Walnut drives in Lake Elsinore.

The Press Enterprise Newspaper reported that of the 1,124 vehicles that passed through the Lake Elsinore checkpoint, only 2 persons were arrested for suspicion of DUI, which is about 1/10 of a percent of the total vehicles detained and questioned.

The point is not to condone impaired drivers.   The point is there are more efficient ways to keep impaired drivers off the roads and keep the public safe.

DUI checkpoints cost tax payers tens of thousands of dollars to conduct.  Yes, there are those that will claim that the DUI checkpoints are “worth it” because they resulted in the arrest of the DUI drivers noted above.  Not necessarily.

Studies continue to show that saturation patrols by law enforcement officers properly trained to detect impaired drivers is a more efficient expenditure of tax payer money, netting more impaired drivers per tax dollar spent.   The DUI drivers noted above would have likely been arrested anyway if saturation patrols were instead implemented.

In addition to the wasted tax dollars, the economic impact as well as the inconvenience to the other 2500+ drivers noted above that were needlessly detained and questioned must be taken into account.

The public needs to pressure the legislature to stop this waste of tax payer dollars and instead spend tax dollars on methods that are proven to be more effective.