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Baton Rouge area police arrest 12 on OWI charges

Not surprisingly, Baton Rouge area law enforcement apparently stepped up their patrols for drunk drivers around the recent New Year's holiday. Police arrested a dozen people, possibly partygoers, on New Year's Eve for DWI and related offenses. Most of the arrest appeared to involve first-time offenders.

New Year's Eve and other holidays mark times in which many people decide to celebrate with family and friends. Some may elect to celebrate with a drink or two. However, even those who are moderate social drinkers may wind up facing drunk driving charges should they choose to get behind the wheel. The legal limit in Louisiana is .08 blood alcohol content, which for many people would not even be considered "inebriated" or even "drunk" in common parlance.

Moreover, police obviously know the times of major celebrations and plan DWI enforcement accordingly. For example, police will sometimes set up sobriety checkpoints in which they will stop every driver to check for drunken behavior. Other police officers on routine patrol normally have to have a good reason to stop a motorist; however, a "good reason" can include minor infractions like a burned out taillight or inching over the centerline.

The best plan is of course to designate a driver who has not had any alcohol to drink. However, when that is not a viable option and when a person faces an OWI charge, it may be necessary to prepare and mount an aggressive legal defense. Even a first-time DWI can damage a person's reputation and result in hefty fines and a burdensome license suspension.

Source: Baton Rouge Today, "12 arrested for DWI in Baton Rogue on New Year's Eve," Jan. 2, 2013

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