11/30/05 — More than 500 charges filed in 'Booze It and Lose It' campaign

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More than 500 charges filed in 'Booze It and Lose It' campaign

By Jack Stephens
Published in News on November 30, 2005 1:46 PM

Goldsboro police have filed 501 traffic and criminal charges -- including 17 for driving while impaired -- during the first two weeks of the winter "Booze It and Lose It" campaign.

The second week of the seven-week campaign against drunken driving ended Sunday. The statewide campaign started Nov. 18, extended through the four-day Thanksgiving holiday weekend and will end Jan. 1 after Christmas and New Year's Eve.

"I'd like to see lower numbers," said police Maj. M.D. Hopper, who supervises the patrol division.

During the second week, the police conducted six checkpoints and 67 saturation and random paroles and charged 14 people with driving while impaired.

Police also wrote 199 speeding citations. Driving too fast is probably the most common infraction, Hopper said.

"Our biggest complaint," he said, "is speeding. We simply do not have enough officers to run radar at every place we have a complaint."

Then he added, "We are really cracking down on violators around the shopping centers by assigning officers to work those areas. But that doesn't mean we will neglect the neighborhoods."

Twelve people were issued tickets for seat-belt violations and nine got tickets for child-restraint violation. "Click It or Ticket," the other half of the annual Governor's Highway Safety Program, encourages the use of passenger belts.

Police also charged 40 people for driving while their license was revoked. A total of 144 other traffic charges were filed.

During the week, officers charged 12 people with drug violations and 21 people with other criminal offenses. They recovered one stolen vehicle and found two fugitives.

For the period from Nov. 18 to Nov. 27, police charged 221 people with speeding, 47 with driving while their license was revoked, 14 with seat-belt violations, nine with child-restraint violations and 153 with other traffic offenses.

Eleven people were charged with drug offenses and 29 were charged with other criminal violations, according to reports.

Totals from the Highway Patrol, Wayne County Sheriff's Office and other municipal police departments were not available.