Johnson City police officers arrested 12 people on DUI charges over the New Year’s holiday, almost half the number from last year.
The holiday period began Friday and ended at the end of Jan. 1.
According to statistics from Sgt. John Hames, JCPD records supervisor, officers arrested 20 people on DUI charges over the 2011-12 holiday.
JCPD’s arrests account for almost all the DUI charges for the holiday. According to the Washington County Sessions Clerk’s office, 15 people went to jail for a DUI charge. That includes the 12 Johnson City police arrested.
JCPD Lt. Larry Williams said the holiday weekend was busy for officers.
“New Year’s Eve we were busy but we weren’t slammed,” Williams said. “It was like a typical Saturday night. We had three extra officers that night.”
Five of the city’s 12 arrests were made on Jan. 1 between 2:20 a.m. and 6:30 a.m., while the others were made between Dec. 28 and Dec. 30.
The Tennessee Highway Patrol conducted intense saturation patrols as well as numerous sobriety and driver’s license checkpoints over the New Year’s holiday. Results from those activities were not available Wednesday.
Most of that enforcement focused on Carter and Greene counties with 20 checkpoints between the two.
The THP also conducted a “No Refusal” enforcement campaign to highlight the new No Refusal law that went into effect last year. The law allows law enforcement officials to obtain search warrants for blood samples in cases involving suspected impaired drivers.
Of the 15 charged with DUI in Washington County, only one person had a charge of violation of implied consent as well. That charge is placed when a person suspected of drunken driving refuses to take a breath test or submit blood when asked to determine their level of intoxication.