Checkpoint nets arrests

Published 11:40 pm Friday, March 18, 2011

Dozens of Suffolk drivers did not have the luck o’ the Irish on their side Thursday night.

They were among hundreds who ran into a police safety checkpoint on Portsmouth Boulevard on St. Patrick’s Day. The checkpoint was set up on the westbound side just past the downtown exit from U.S. Route 58 to catch drivers coming into the city from points east.

According to Suffolk Police Major Stephanie Burch, police arrested one person for driving under the influence of alcohol. They also served three felony warrants and issued 49 summonses for traffic violations.

Email newsletter signup

“We feel like it went very well,” Burch said. “A lot of citizens were very appreciative of us being out there.”

The city has grant funding from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to do a checkpoint every quarter.

“We try to strategically use those funds to get the most benefit,” Burch said. The police department thought St. Patrick’s Day — widely known as a drinking holiday — would be an ideal time to conduct a checkpoint.

They chose Portsmouth Boulevard because it has high crash numbers, Burch said.

“We elected to do it in our high-crash corridor so we could make an impact there,” she said.