Police on alert for Opening Day drunk drivers

Extra patrols are out
Posted at 6:23 PM, Apr 03, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-03 19:39:20-04

Police are on alert for drunk drivers on Opening Day, increasing patrol and trying to make people aware of safe rides.

Lt. Todd Clementi from the West Allis Police Department said he hopes people use common sense at the game, but notes it isn’t always the case.

"Our hope is always that people make a good choice, but unfortunately when you're out there drinking, your capacity for good decisions in diminished," Clementi said.

For Opening Day 2017, West Allis PD had extra patrols funded by a grant to help catch people drinking and driving.

"Your poor judgment for all of a couple minutes could be the difference between your life or someone else's," Clementi said.

A number of people have been stopped and arrested on previous Opening Days. In 2014, West Allis PD arrested four people, who combined had 10 citations. In 2016, three were arrested and  six were issued citations. Other years, there may be one or two arrests.

Clementi said there are many reasons why one year differs from another. Lately, traffic rerouted from freeway construction has sent more people onto their roads.

Miller Park also offers programming to keep people from drinking and driving. TheirDesignated Driver programgives designated drivers over 21-years-old who park in their lot a free soda coupon. DD's must register and promise not to drink. Last year, that program rated in the top 5 among Major League Baseball clubs with 39,632 designated drivers signing up.

They also have the Safe Ride Home program, which gives a free ride home to people who parked in Miller Park lots, but can't drive home. That program is at Brewer's management discretion.

Clementi hopes programs like that at least force people to think twice before getting behind the wheel. He said he doesn't like to arrest people, but know it's worth it.

"The end result is we may have literally just saved a life by arresting somebody," he said.


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