Hampden Township DUI arrests up 10 percent, crashes down 33 percent in 2016

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – A Cumberland County police department is cracking down on drunk driving by increasing DUI enforcement and training.

The Hampden Township Police Department had more DUI arrests and fewer DUI crashes in 2016.

“DUIs are obviously a big problem in the country and across the nation. It results in a lot of deaths each year,” police Chief Steven Junkin said.

Junkin is beefing up DUI enforcement to keep the roads you drive on safer and seeing big results.

“We’re well over a 10 percent increase in DUI arrests over the last year, and a large majority of those are turning out to be drug-related DUI,” he said.

Officers made 92 DUI arrests in 2015 and 101 arrests in 2016. DUI crashes decreased by 33 percent during the same year.

We’ve been having our guys out there at the times that DUIs are occurring, usually those overnight hours,” Junkin said.

The chief believes new training is a big part of the solution, besides putting officers on the streets at the right time and place.

Officers in their probationary period are getting field sobriety training and Advanced Roadside Detection Enforcement.

“We’re able to determine or at least have a better idea as to whether or not someone’s under the influence of marijuana, heroin, or for that matter, prescription drugs,” Det. Thomas Burfeind said.

“There are people that are maimed, that are killed, their lives are forever changed because of a decision, a poor decision, by somebody else. We are that barrier between that poor decision and that life-altering event,” Junkin said.

Junkin hopes the increased enforcement sends the message to get a ride if you’re too drunk to drive.

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