Police plan road blocks

By CNJ staff

Local law enforcement will increase drunken driving patrols through new year’s celebration, law officials said.

Clovis Police Chief Bill Carey said his force will have increased patrols and DWI checkpoints in the city beginning about 10 p.m. He expects one checkpoint to be on South Prince Street.

At checkpoints, police will funnel traffic through one lane and check drivers’ licenses and insurance, Carey said. Officers will also look for any sign of intoxication.

“We are not going to make allowances,” Carey said. “If they are driving and drinking they are going to go to jail. We have zero tolerance for that.”

Curry County Sheriff Roger Hatcher said much of his staff will assist at a DWI checkpoint to be set up in Texico, where an abundance of state DWI enforcement money will fund the deputies.

New Mexico State Police Sgt. Jeff Vick said officers will patrol the District 9 area encompassing Tucumcari, Santa Rosa, Fort Sumner, Portales and Clovis.

New Year’s Eve is often a time when gun owners fire their weapons in celebration, and Vick said police will charge revelers with recklessly discharging a weapon. Handling a weapon under the influence of drugs or alcohol is also a crime, he said.

Carey said police will offer rides home only when officers are available, but he expects staff to be busy.