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Jasper County DWI Task Force's Future - KOAM TV 7

Jasper County DWI Task Force's Future

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JASPER COUNTY, MISSOURI -

Thanks to a multi-agency DWI task force involving the Joplin and Webb City Police Department, and the Jasper County Sheriff's Office, 20 impaired driving arrests were made this Saint Patrick's Day weekend.

"So honestly we would have preferred to have no DWI arrests this weekend. We made it very clear that we were going to be out. We were going to be out in force, and simply don't drink and drive," said Joplin Police Captain Trevor Duncan.

The task force utilized saturation patrols, which add extra officers to the roadways whose sole purpose is to identify and pull over drunk drivers. Last year, Missouri lawmakers axed 20 million dollars set aside for drunk driving check points, but that isn't deterring local law enforcement.

"When the change in the law came, we as a task force still got together and said, 'we're not going to quit protecting our roadways and keeping our citizens safe, and so we will do multi-jurisdictional saturation patrols,' which is what we did this weekend," said Jasper County Staff Sergeant John Hicks.

And while they're may not be state funds for drunk driving check points, that doesn't mean they'll be completely replaced by saturation patrols.

"I know that my sheriff and the Joplin police chief have both stated that they will find money within their own budgets, to host a number of checkpoints per year. It just won't be from the MODOT federal money," said Hicks.

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