Drunk-Driving Team Arrests 80 Motorists During Holidays

A driving-under-the-influence team, fielded jointly by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, the California Highway Patrol and five South Bay police departments, arrested 80 people for drunk driving during the holiday period, according to the Gardena Police Department, which coordinated the program.

Operating between Dec. 20 and Dec. 31, the team--which also included officers from Hawthorne, Manhattan Beach, El Segundo and Redondo Beach--concentrated on a different area each day.

Special holiday task forces also were formed by police departments in Torrance and Inglewood to concentrate on drunk drivers.

Torrance police said 39 arrests were made by its task force during a two-week holiday period, while an additional 13 drunk drivers were arrested by regular patrol officers.

The task force in Inglewood, which operated from mid-November until the end of the year, arrested 96 people for driving under the influence, according to the department.

In the South Bay, CHP officers not a part of the joint term arrested three people for drunk driving at a pre-Christmas sobriety checkpoint. Over the two-day New Year's holiday, nine arrests for driving under the influence were made by the CHP on the San Diego and Harbor freeways, according to the agency.

The Lomita sheriff's station, which also patrols much of the Palos Verdes Peninsula, made six arrests for drunk driving over the New Year's holiday.

The Los Angeles Police Department's South Bureau arrested 22 people for driving under the influence over New Year's in the city strip and Harbor areas the bureau patrols.

In other parts of the South Bay, El Segundo police arrested two on driving-under-the-influence charges; Hermosa Beach, four; Manhattan Beach, three; and Palos Verdes Estates, one.

About 55 Christmas and New Year's party-goers in the South Bay took advantage of free rides home offered by Wilmington-based United Checker Cab Co., the company said. Memorial Hospital of Gardena and the Comp Care hospital chain sponsored the program to keep drunk drivers from getting behind the wheel.

Copyright © 2019, Los Angeles Times
EDITION: California | U.S. & World