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June 14, 2007

DUI checkpoints

I was appalled while reading the public safety news in the Local section Sunday (6/10). Page B-3 detailed a DUI checkpoint performed late Friday and early Saturday near the Plaza. Of the 842 vehicles stopped, eight individuals were arrested, a success rate of less than 1 percent.
During the checkpoint, a drive-by shooting occurred at 72nd and Walrond. The story appeared just below the DUI story.
Is this really an effective use of our police?
The police aren’t to blame. They are merely responding to the public. A year after Kansas City posted its highest murder rate in recent years, a UMKC survey listed speeding as Kansas City’s biggest crime — ahead of murder.
We’ve traded in common sense for officers forced to act as “mothers,” telling us don’t speed and wear seatbelts.
How about letting the police worry about murder cases, gang violence, drugs and keeping our streets safe?
Jason Wood
Kansas City



I will take eight people out of 2,000 if it meant eight drunk drivers aren't driving anymore. Also, do you really think they just take people off the beat for DUI checklanes? Know how the system works and then approach problem areas.
If you don't want to be told by an officer to wear a seat belt, then put it on.
Oh, thanks for using a survey as evidence.


What they should do is go from drinking establishment to drinking establishment like the SS did in WWII and wait outside in the parking lots. Anyone who gets in their vehicles, gets a DUI. It would drastically imrpove their numbers and increase revenue for the city. We all know it is not about public safety.


The problem with DUI checkpoints is that the cities are required to inform the public of where they will be held, so the "smart" drunk drivers know where to avoid. That accounts for most of the low success rate of the checkpoints.


This letter is somewhat unfair. I'm not a big fan of DUI checkpoints, and 8 out of 842 is pretty sorry, but it's not as if the police could have stopped a drive by shooting before it happened. Plus, the comment that speeding is more prevalent than murder is just plain silly. Look, I might even agree that DUI checkpoints are not a great idea, but let's at least argue that issue honestly.

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