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DUI crackdown during St. Patrick's Day leads to several arrests

An increase in police during the recent St. Patrick's Day activities resulted in more than 600 arrests across the state of Colorado. This was more than a 30 percent boost from the over 450 arrests that occurred last year. The arrests for crimes such as DUI took place during the period of March 10 to 20.

Out of the more than 80 participating police departments in the state, Colorado Springs' department arrested the most people. City police took into custody 52 drivers who were reportedly impaired during this 10-day enforcement period. In addition, Fountain authorities arrested a couple of motorists, while the state patrol's Colorado Springs post added an additional nine arrests, thus bringing the total to 63 in El Paso County.

In the state of Colorado, a 0.05 percent blood alcohol level indicates driving while alcohol impaired, whereas a 0.08 percent level indicates driving under the influence. A first-time offender may face a year behind bars along with the suspension of a license. In addition, fines totaling over $13,500 are possible. These penalties are higher for those with previous DUI convictions. Police in Colorado said they were planning yet another DUI enforcement period starting April 7.

Being taken into custody for DUI is understandably frightening, but a charge is not the same as a conviction. Prosecutors have to prove a charge beyond a reasonable doubt before a conviction can be handed down. The criminal defense will push to make sure that the defendant's relevant rights are protected during all stages of a criminal proceeding involving driving under the influence in Colorado.

Source: gazette.com, "Colorado Springs police arrest 52 suspected drunk drivers during St. Patrick's Day enforcement period", Kaitlin Durbin, March 23, 2017

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