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Saturation Patrol Aims To Keep Drunks Off Road

August 25, 2012, 10:00 PM by Hailey Higgins

Saturation Patrol Aims To Keep Drunks Off Road

A deadly crash involving a drunk driver was exactly what law enforcement did not want to happen overnight after a large multi-agency saturation patrol and checkpoint in the Sioux Falls area.

Ten year police veteran Erin McGillvray typically works the morning shift. But Friday night, she worked overtime as part of a massive saturation patrol, involving Sioux Falls Police, Highway Patrol and Sheriff's deputies in Minnehaha and Lincoln Counties.

"Odds are, you're going to see one of us at some point tonight," McGillvray said.

Police officers penetrate the core of Sioux Falls, looking for any reason to pull someone over to check and see if they're driving drunk.

“I'm going to stop this dodge neon, he's got a headlight out,” McGillvray said.

It didn't take long before McGillvray backs up several other officers during a suspected DWI stop. And police have reason to be aggressive.

On Tuesday a 21-year-old man took police on a high speed chase before being charged with his fourth DWI. And an 18-year-old was charged with his second DWI after a hit and run on Monday.

"If we can remove someone that's potentially dangerous from the street than we've essentially done our job for the night," McGillvray said.

Police say the saturation patrol was effective, taking several drunk drivers off the road and even making a few drug arrests.

Law enforcement held two checkpoints in addition to the saturation patrol Friday night.

This event coincides with the National Mobilization looking for impaired drivers and is supported by the Office of Highway Safety.

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