ISP safety checkpoint nets 5 arrests overnight - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

ISP safety checkpoint nets 5 arrests overnight

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Illinois State Police give drivers under the influence something to think about before the next time they break the law.

For four hours, police were pulling over cars traveling along North 6th Street and Benton Street in Rockford.

Drivers were asked to show their license and proof of insurance. If everything checked out, and the vehicle was safe and legal, police sent them on their way.

'If there's a cause for us to stop and look further, there's a violation in the vehicle code or someone is giving us signs of impairment, then we obviously are allowed to investigate further," says Illinois State Police District 16 Master Sergeant Carl Heintz.

The operation netted a total of 5 arrests. One was for DUI. Four more were other alcohol or drug arrests.

Some drivers did their best to avoid the whole operation. One tossed three small bags of marijuana and crack cocaine out his window before speeding through the checkpoint.

Another motorist, Lewis Hardin, says he was on his way home when police officers pulled his car aside. He claims this violated his rights. "I wasn't doing anything illegal. They stopped me and told me to pull over here," says Hardin.

Police say they searched Hardin's car after he was unable to present a valid drivers license. He was issued three citations.

"I received one for no license, I received one for possession of marijuana, and for drug paraphernalia."

Police say Hardin and others broke the law. A judge will decide their punishment, and hopefully, won't be repeat offenders.

Law enforcement officers say the checkpoints aren't only for the moment, but for the future. "We want them to know that we're out here, we're trying to make the roads as safe as we can," says Heintz.

In addition to the arrests, 35 more citations were handed out to motorists. These violations ranged from not wearing a seatbelt, to vehicle registration offenses.

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