Lakewood PD: Driving Under the Influence of Drugs Busts at DUI Checkpoints Inching Up

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A file photo from a 2013 Denver Police Department DUI checkpoint.
In May, the Lakewood Police Department shared data showing that at least 75 percent of DUI arrests in the city between 2009 and 2013 involved alcohol, not drugs -- and in many years, the disparity was even greater.

In the months since then, however, LPD spokesman Steve Davis tells us the number of DUIDs have been inching upward, with alcohol and drug busts running neck and neck.

See also: Marijuana: At least 75 Percent of DUIs in One Colorado City Involve Alcohol, Not Pot

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A photo from this past week's DUI checkpoint as shared on the Lakewood Police Department Facebook page.
This past weekend, the Lakewood Police Department joined the Colorado State Patrol and the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office in conducting a DUI checkpoint. The location, Wadsworth south of Bowles, was chosen "due to the high number of DUI arrests made in the general vicinity in recent months," the post reveals.

In the first four hours of the checkpoint's operation, eight DUI arrests were made, and Davis says that number is fairly typical.

"When we do a DUI checkpoint, a good average is contacting 2,500 to 3,000 cars," he notes. "And I don't think I've seen the number of arrests in double digits. Usually it's four, six, eight: somewhere in that neighborhood. So overall, the percentage is very, very low."

However, he goes on, "we're seeing what I think I can safely say is a little increase in driving under the influence of drugs -- specifically marijuana."

Davis uses the data from a July 26 checkpoint as an example. By his count, "we contacted 2,996 cars and arrested six people. Three of them were for DUI and three were for DUID."

At this point, Davis doesn't have the breakdown for the most recent checkpoint; when he passes along that information, we'll update this post. Until then, there's no telling if the latest tally supports this trend or not. But lately, he says, "the arrests have been more fifty-fifty than they used to be."

Here's a document laying out the Lakewood DUI statistics for 2009 through 2013.

Lakewood DUI and DUID Statistics 2009 2013

Send your story tips to the author, Michael Roberts.


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86 comments
Sean Valdez
Sean Valdez

Greg Jabuki DeRuckus A week before the "Colorado fatalities are up 100%." story came out there was an article that said Colorado accidents were down. In fact in the same article that said it was up it also said accidents were 15% down. How is that? Then an article came out that said' Teen use was going down.' Which is true in CO drug use among teens is WAY down. Yet right wing media comes out and says other wise. Yes they are lying and no one is doing anything about it. Do I agree that Marijuana has its down falls yes. Do I think it is getting worse no.

George White
George White

Never believe a word the Lakewood police department says. They're just a bunch of trigger-happy, ask-questions-later band of good ol' boys.

Kyron Rough
Kyron Rough

It's because they assume if your not drunk your high so your fucked either way just cause you can't get fucked up and your wife don't give dome doesn't mean you can false accuse and shoot our doggs ....move Lakewood to hmm Nebraska you fucks will mesh perfectly

Todd Owens
Todd Owens

If you get passed on a Friday by some one doing 100 they probably are drunk, if you pass someone doing 25 on ! 25 on a Friday they are propbably high. We see so many ads these days for every type of pill known to mankind, we see it and our kids see it yet no one complains about it AT ALL, yet pass a bill to let ppl smoke weed and all of a sudden all the do gooders come out of the wood work. Get over your selves and step off your soap box, why not put more effort into all the money going to the schools from the tax dollars, i dont see the pharmaceutical companies paying a dime for it.

Greg Jabuki DeRuckus
Greg Jabuki DeRuckus

6 cars out of 3000, sounds like a complete waste of resources to me. then again there is no end to justifying too many cops with too little crime in Lakewood. But if Lakewood wants to pay for a ton of bored cops that go out and harass people then that's their decision.

Greg Jabuki DeRuckus
Greg Jabuki DeRuckus

You can't have it both ways. Are you smoking weed to get high and yes impair your mind and abilities, or not? I fully support decriminalizing thc and especially the hemp industry but this attitude of you can do no wrong on weed is ridiculous. Of course more people are getting caught using drugs as police are trained to identify it more and more people are doing it. why would police lie about drug dui's? they are still illegal. Decriminalization means police no longer have to worry about people possessing minor amounts and paraphernalia, but beyond that it doesn't really change much about how police do their jobs. You can't use it in public and you can't use it and drive. This is nothing new.

Greg Jabuki DeRuckus
Greg Jabuki DeRuckus

I would rather be on the road with neither as the law demands. I don't want to be driving next to someone coked out, tweeking, numb from pain killers or any other number of ways to drive impaired like a twat.

Greg Jabuki DeRuckus
Greg Jabuki DeRuckus

god damn jordan angry much? I think Paul's response is perfectly to the point. If you are so enraged about police performance have you ever filed a complaint? have you ever gone to a city council meeting on the subject? have you tried to participate in the system rather then saying it's all fucked? Police are people too, they aren't all the same, and not everyone can or should do what is a very hard job of dealing with everyone's bullshit. So you think they are lying about drug dui's? I think the lakewood PD is generally over funded for the level of actual crimes in lakewood but there is no reason to lie about drug vs alcohol dui's. In fact I would be shocked if drug dui's were not going up since the legalization of retail thc. There have always been stupid people and stoners aren't exactly known for any increased skills or judgement other then eating a whole bag of chips. This simply shows police are doing exactly what they should be doing and that's catching people breaking the law when they could seriously hurt other people, and not wasting everyone's time focused on minor possession.

Chris Cater
Chris Cater

I will do my best to avoid Lakewood, problem solved.(I don't drive under the influence ever, but our draconian duid 5 nanogram means Lakewood would more than likely charge me anyway)

Mike Streno
Mike Streno

Don't drive at all if your under the influence of anything, people who are under the influence of narijuana have slower reaction to things around them. Being on the road with any impairment is dangerous!!!! If you think driving high is ok or drunk stay the fuck away from me.

Sean Valdez
Sean Valdez

This is going to get worse they continue to lie about stats and the local media does nothing.

Zack Judish
Zack Judish

The cops are just mad they never got invited to smoke with the cool kids in high school and they carry it with them. Now they are bullies, with guns and a badge.

Ffej W Knar
Ffej W Knar

Why are there no Knock Knock jokes about America? Because Freedom rings.

Tony Male
Tony Male

@che A cop only needs to decide he believes you're stoned. It's enough to write the ticket, and if you have a really great lawyer you might get the case dismissed. However your license will have already been revoked and the DMV is way more corrupt that the cops are.

Tony Male
Tony Male

It's true. However before they didn't give a rat's ass if you were stoned because they know it's mostly harmless. The police have been instructed to "crack down" and they did. Next time you get pulled over and have been smoking in the car, if they smell it you're fucked.

Ffej W Knar
Ffej W Knar

poor American Constitution....militant zone in Lakewood.. too bad.

Che Weller
Che Weller

Yeah...how does a cop judge that you are under the influence of pot? Is there a roadside drug test that confirms intoxication Like a breath o lizer? NOPE.. then its all an assumption that your driving stoned, untill the blood test comes back..more of the "he said she said " nonsense. This could happen to nonsmokers simply because the cop deems your eyes..a little red. So be very very very very careful if you have hay fever or allergies.

Don Herman
Don Herman

When they just make it up, sure.

Anwar Mahmalji
Anwar Mahmalji

Any recent study shows Colorado is leading the country in economic growth and opportunity, so to label Colorado as a "POS" state is a bit of a stretch.

Alan Brooks
Alan Brooks

Colorado"s DUI Business and now Marijuana is why I left that POS state

Tim Williamson
Tim Williamson

That location on Wadsworth is not Lakewoods jurisdiction, its Jefferson County. What is Lakewood doing there?

Michael O'Connor
Michael O'Connor

yes, cuz they weren't looking before? "that is because they are looking for it now" really? of course they were looking for it when it was illegal.

Jónatas Roze
Jónatas Roze

.002% arrest rate sounds like a fantastic use of police resources and public funds.

Glen Kelley
Glen Kelley

How do they know? Are they performing a blood test on the side of of the road. Lakewood is out to ban pot that is all. Grow your own.

Talina Ann Smith
Talina Ann Smith

My guess is that the number is going up because officers are now much better trained to spot DUID's. Most of my stoner friends drive LESS while stoned now that rec is legalized because they know it's being looked for and they also understand that doing so and getting busted would result in a DUI. I'm not fond of a lot of before/after stats because I think so many of the before numbers come from lack of education on one side or the other (or both!).

Riley Nolan
Riley Nolan

If you're under the influence of anything stay off the road... It might suck not making the 12am Taco Bell run, but you'll live. Don't put others at risk because you 'think' you can drive okay high. By all means smoke or drink, just don't drive after.

Shauna Stenzel
Shauna Stenzel

This is based on one cops memory. Post some REAL news Denver Westword!

Tracy King
Tracy King

No I don't believe that. I personally would rather be on the road with someone who had smoked weed than someone that has been drinking.

Che Weller
Che Weller

Butch Buckley thc and alcohol do very different things to the body. 28 percent of what? 28 % of the plant is thc? Nope..bullshit

Jordan Carrier
Jordan Carrier

is that kindergarten remark all that you got? Actually, why don't you lighten up by; calling the cops on "some noise" you hear in your backyard, let them kill your dog, your neighbor, and your parakeet for obstruction of justice and interfering with an investigation. Why the FUCK are you so calm right now? Are you a fucking pig? Fuck you you fucking loser.

Jordan Carrier
Jordan Carrier

Yeah, because the people who get paid to lie their whole career tell us some stupid fucking stats, yes believe them. Believe they are here for your safety too. They are such good fucking people….not. I mean, how fucking stupid and naive do you have to be? This shit is obvious, not a rumor. Police are awful, the most awful people of our society, and we blindly give them authority. These people if given a grenade, would blow everyone to pieces just cause they could and the guy who watched them do it would say he didn't see a thing.

bbuckley61
bbuckley61

Back in college at OSU I think our weed hovered around 3% THC. I cannot smoke Colorado weed primarily because of it's debilitating strength! Texting is probably worse, but smoking 25% THC weed and trying to drive is absurd! Even a "wake and bake" habitual stoner HAS to agree. When it becomes an hysterical endeavor to wipe your ass, how can you possibly pilot a vehicle?

Anwar Mahmalji
Anwar Mahmalji

Lakewood is trying their best to make marijuana legalization seem like a failed social experiment. From inflated DUI numbers, a ban on concentrate production to ballot question 2A that if passed, will ban marijuana shops from operating within the city of Lakewood. It's obvious that officials are being heavy handed with their anti-marijuana bullshit.

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

2,996 Americans were harassed to catch 6 people?  What a waste of time they could have spent having sex with hookers while on duty, assaulting people, and shooting dogs.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

It is up to us to -- to demand better coverage and better policing both.

GuestWho
GuestWho topcommenter

@muhutdafuga    Where are the checkpoints to stop texting and driving?  How many cell phones were found in the cars at the checkpoints?


Driving while Texting Six Times More Dangerous than Driving while Drunk


http://www2.potsdam.edu/alcohol/files/Driving-while-Texting-Six-Times-More-Dangerous-than-Driving-while-Drunk.html


"Driving a vehicle while texting is six times more dangerous than driving while intoxicated according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).1 The federal agency reports that sending or receiving a text takes a driver’s eyes from the road for an average of 4.6 seconds, the equivalent -- when traveling at 55 mph -- of driving the length of an entire football field while blindfolded.2"


"Texting while driving a vehicle has now replaced drinking while driving as the leading cause of accidents and deaths of teenage drivers.4 Texting in traffic isn’t simply a problem among teens and 47% of adults admit that they text while driving.5 Texting drivers are 23 times more likely to be involved in a crash than non-texting drivers.6"

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

@GuestWho @muhutdafuga MOST excellent point about texting.  I bet you know the answer.  The prohibition crowd had a conclusion, and they were looking for talking points, not public safety.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@GuestWho ... but in Colorado, it has been established that people can arbitrarily ignore and willfully violate Federal laws they find inconvenient.

GuestWho
GuestWho topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay   Federal policies agree in regards to marijuana....HTH.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@GuestWho "If you reside in America and it is dinnertime ..."


and have only broken 3 (three) laws, you're a pathetic amateur.


Remember -- Regulation Works! ... and such Orwellian idiocy even functions as a scampaign slogan of really stupid stoners.

GuestWho
GuestWho topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay  What part of "clear and unambiguous compliance with existing state laws" don't they comprehend?

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@GuestWho ... the arbitrary and capricious interpretation of the unclear and ambiguous state laws, no doubt.

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