The first sobriety checkpoint employed by Los Angeles police since the controversial technique was approved by the state Supreme Court accounted for some of the more than 170 arrests of suspected drunk drivers over the weekend, authorities said.
The roadblock, set up at the busy Hollywood intersection of Santa Monica Boulevard and Tamarind Avenue from 8 p.m. Saturday to 1 a.m. Sunday, nabbed 16 motorists suspected of being under the influence, Sgt. Mike Pattee said. Another 25 suspected drunk drivers were arrested in the surrounding areas by a roving task force of officers, and the same task force made 130 arrests in the mid-city area, Pattee said.
Police and the California Highway Patrol suspended the use of sobriety checkpoints when lawsuits were filed to test the constitutionality of the roadblocks. But the state Supreme Court ruled in October that the use of checkpoints to combat drunk driving outweighed the inconvenience to sober drivers.