The county has received a $560,000 grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety that will supplement the salaries of three probation officers in an effort to prevent repeat DUIs, officials are announcing.
The grant puts focus on high-risk repeat DUI offenders and is aimed at reducing the number of victims killed and injured in alcohol and other drug-related collisions in the county, especially by DUI probationers.
“This grant is a tremendous boost to our efforts,” said San Diego County Probation Chief Adolfo Gonzales. “Overall, 82 percent of DUI probationers remain in compliance. That is due in part to the proactive enforcement efforts of our officers and the linking of offenders to appropriate services such as counseling, support meetings, and substance abuse treatment to help them stay sober.”
The probation department’s enforcement role includes intensive supervision as needed, unannounced visits and searches, random drug and alcohol testing, electronic monitoring if ordered, and sobriety checkpoints, according to county officials. Probation officers also compile and send out lists of recent felony DUI offenders living in the area to the sheriff’s department and other law enforcement agencies.
So far in 2016, 15 new DUI offenses have been committed by those already under San Diego County Probation Department supervision for that same crime, and 16 DUI probationers have been arrested or cited for driving with a suspended or revoked license in San Diego County, according to county numbers.
Funding for the grant comes from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The grant period extends through October 2017.