Six people who were not supposed to be driving due to pending DUI cases were cited during a two-day court sting conducted by Murrieta police, it was announced Tuesday.
The Murrieta Police Department’s undercover operation was conducted between 8 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Friday and again Monday at Southwest Justice Center, according to Murrieta police Sgt. Jim Gruwell.
“Police officers staked out offenders who had been told by a judge not to drive and/or who had been told of their license suspension,” Gruwell stated in a news release.
Of 10 offenders whom officers followed from courtrooms, four were found in compliance with the law because they had arranged alternate means of transportation.
Six others allegedly proceeded to get behind the wheel and drive away from the courthouse until they were stopped by nearby waiting officers.
The suspects cited for allegedly driving on suspended licenses, and, where legally justified, Gruwell said, their vehicles were impounded for 30 days.
“Those cited...could face additional jail time, long driver license suspensions, along with other financial hits including attorney fees, court costs, lost time at work, and the potential loss of job or job prospects,” Gruwell said. “When family, friends and co-workers find out, violators can also face tremendous personal embarrassment and humiliation.”
The Murrieta Police Department utilized grant funding from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, to staff the undercover sting, according to the news release.
The court stakeout operation, along with regularly scheduled high visibility DUI enforcement, serve as proven deterrents with the goal of keeping impaired drivers from the road and heightening awareness among the public of the dangers of driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol, Gruwell stated.