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'Booze It & Lose It' campaign results in fewer DWI arrests

There were more DWI checkpoints and patrol units on North Carolina highways than usual between March 13 and March 17. The state's "Booze It & Lose It" campaign targeted impaired drivers over the St. Patrick's Day holiday.

This year, law enforcement arrested 785 people for DWI, which is fewer than the over 800 people arrested last year. According to one sergeant in the state's highway patrol, "We were definitely out there. Maybe people are starting to get the idea to not do that."

The sergeant said that impaired drivers were not the only cause of car accidents. More people were driving without a seat belt or caught speeding during the campaign this year than last. Wake County ranked second in drug violations, with Mecklenburg County seeing almost 100 more violations. The total number of criminal and traffic violations was up compared to last year. This year, there were 28,065 written violations; last year, there were 23,867.

Those who have been arrested for impaired driving may be at a loss as to what to do next. North Carolina is very tough on DWIs, with possible penalties ranging from jail time and fines to driver's license suspensions and community service. Your car insurance premiums will also likely go up. A substance abuse program or an alcohol safety school may also be required.

An attorney experienced in handling DWI cases can help. You can learn what penalties you are facing, If there is a plea bargain available or if there is a problem with the evidence that could result in a trial going in your favor.

Source: wsoctv.com, "State releases ‘Booze It & Lose It’ campaign numbers," Alexa Ashwell, March. 20, 2015

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