It should come as no surprise that the Minnesota State Patrol is planning ahead for the annual St. Patrick’s Day celebrations that will be taking place across the state this weekend. Minneapolis/St. Paul DWI defense lawyers know that an arrest for drunk driving can expose a driver to serious fines, potential jail or prison time, the loss of driving privileges in Minnesota and a variety of other direct and collateral consequences that may follow a DWI arrest.
State troopers and local law enforcement agencies across Minnesota will undoubtedly be out in full force looking to make traffic stops to look for signs of impaired driving. With St. Patrick’s Day falling on a Saturday this year, the State Patrol will send extra troopers out on the roads.
The troopers are expected to be joined by Sheriff’s deputies and local law enforcement officers in seeking to enforce Minnesota’s stringent DWI laws leading up to, and during the St. Patrick’s Day festivities this weekend.
The State Patrol says extra officers will be deployed in Towards Zero Deaths Driving While Impaired shifts through the weekend celebrations. Authorities say that the last time that St. Patrick’s Day fell on a Saturday–in 2007–527 drivers were arrested for DWI on Minnesota roads. Authorities say that on a typical weekend, roughly 170 drivers are arrested for DWI in Minnesota.
While law enforcement will be focusing on drunk driving offenses during the next few days, the increased presence of law enforcement on Minnesota’s roads is likely to generate an increased number of other types of charges. It is important to note that a traffic ticket-or a slate of DWI charges-does not mean that a driver is guilty of the charge.
An aggressive DWI defense lawyer can review the facts surrounding an arrest or citation and explore a variety of legal defenses that may be available. Defendants in traffic and DWI cases have a right to challenge the state’s allegations in court.
While the state plans ahead to enforce Minnesota DWI charges, people who wish to attend celebrations during the week can also plan ahead. Taxicabs and sober designated drivers can help Minnesotans avoid being charged with an offense.
Source: Northland’s News Center, “MN State Patrol Stepping Up DWI Patrols on St. Patrick’s Day,” March 12, 2012