In anticipation of the upcoming holiday weekend travel period, Baltimore police recently conducted a city-wide sweep, searching out those with outstanding warrants for drunk driving-related charges. Baltimore police say the timing of the sweep coincided with the increased traffic of the holiday season in an effort to keep drivers safe as they go about their preparations and celebrations.
The sweep, which lasted three days, has been planned for some time, but was accelerated after an alleged drunk driving accident involving two Baltimore police officers earlier this month. According to Sgt. Stacey Graves, two officers were on patrol when they were hit by a drunk driver, and one suffered serious injuries during the crash. Graves said the incident reinforced the need to find DUI offenders and get them off the streets.
According to the police department, the sweep was a success, settling 113 outstanding DUI warrants, including 55 felonies. Graves says that many of the sweep targets were repeat offenders who can pose the most danger to other drivers. “It’s really important to go after them because those are people who seem to not be deterred,” Graves said. “We want to make sure they are in custody. With the holidays coming up there is increased traffic on the road.” This means more Maryland traffic ticket violations.
Although the sweep has been completed, Baltimore police say that their efforts are only beginning. According to Graves, police will continue to seek offenders with outstanding warrants, and will be on the lookout for drunk drivers using saturation patrols and similar efforts. “[Drunk driving] is not worth it,” Graves said. “Don’t drink and drive. Call a friend or make arrangements prior to drinking at a party.”