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Officials say it's like a barracks on wheels

By Abbie Swanson
The Patriot Ledger
Posted Jul 21, 2008 @ 08:16 AM
Last update Jul 21, 2008 @ 10:44 AM

HINGHAM -

The pace of arrests was fast: 12 people arrested and charged with drunken driving in three hours.
Police said the first sobriety checkpoint in Hingham in a dozen years was a success, in large part because of a relatively new weapon in their arsenal: the Breath Alcohol Testing vehicle, or BAT mobile.
About 30 State Police troopers along with local police set up the roadblock Friday night on Route 3A in front of Bathing Beach. They stopped drivers until about 2 a.m. Saturday.
Seven adults were charged with drunken driving, three minors were charged with possession of alcohol and drunken driving, one person was arrested for possession of marijuana and one was charged with resisting arrest.
The first arrest at the roadblock came at 11:18 p.m.
Those arrested were taken to the Norwell or Hingham police station for booking. Meanwhile, waiting tow trucks loaded impounded vehicles.
The number of people arrested Friday night in Hingham was more than usual for three hours of work, police said. On average, 200 people are arrested on drunken driving charges in the entire state every week.
The job was made easier in Hingham by the presence of the $500,000 BAT mobile.
First unveiled in 2006, the BAT mobile is a police barracks on wheels. Complete with breath analysis devices, laptops for booking, a bathroom, an Internet connection to search prior arrests and a four-person holding cell, the BAT mobile allows officers on board, who call themselves the "BAT crew," the ability to arrest and process large numbers of people at sobriety checkpoints.
"They have really streamlined the process," said Tom Majenski, commander of the State Police barracks in Norwell.
The BAT mobile allows officers to check on more drivers during a roadblock than they would be able to without it, police said.
State Police have two BAT mobiles. Weekends during the summer, the two vehicles and their crews set up in different towns across the state and check on drivers.
Friday evening was BAT II's debut in Hingham.
Officers said they hope the roadblock sends a message to drivers to think twice before driving after drinking.
"If we get the message to one person tonight, that will be a success," State Police Capt. Gerard Regan said.
In 2006, 174 people died in drunken driving-related accidents in Massachusetts, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The last drunken driving fatality in Hingham was 11 years ago, police said.
In addition to asking drivers smelling of alcohol or slurring their speech to submit to sobriety tests, police were handing out fliers to every driver that describe a designated driver program of Hingham police and the Plymouth County District Attorney's office.
The flier lists Hingham businesses that give out free soft drinks to designated drivers.
"People don't think it's going to happen to them," said Hingham Police Sgt. Steven Dearth, who has been on the force for 15 years. "A lot of people feel like they won't get caught."

The following people were charged after being pulled over in the sobriety checkpoint in Hingham Friday night and Saturday morning:

Richard E. Decosta, 42, of 155 George Washington Blvd., Hull, was charged with possession of marijuana.

Peter A. Cahill, 22, of 3 Windjammer Way, Hingham, was charged with drunken driving.

Kenneth D. Dwyer, 24, of 21 Judy Road, Scituate, was charged with resisting arrest.

Robert W. Fusco Jr., 19, of 20 Merrymount Road, Weymouth, was charged with transportation of alcohol as a minor.

Daniel L. Thorne, 18, of 15 Andrew Road, Weymouth, ws charged with the possession of alcohol as a minor.

Joshua Pizarro, 18, of 30 Lochmere Ave., Weymouth, was charged with possession of marijuana and alcohol as a minor.

Mark Lebbossiere, 47, of 23 Independence Ave., Stoughton, was charged with drunken driving.

Barbara A. Doherty, 53, of 447 Beachwood St., Cohasset, was charged with failing to stop for a police officer.

Mariette Perdigao, 44, of 456 South River St., Marshfield, waas charged with drunken driving, failure to stop for a police officer, failure to stay in marked lanes, improper turns and failure to yield at an intersection.

Adrian Baldeon, 18, of 6 Manor Drive, Hingham, was charged with drunken driving.

Nicole Lorigan, 21, of 15 Popes Lane, Hingham, was charged with drunken driving and failure to stop at a red light.

Michael Deyeso, 48, of 8 Bates Lane, Cohasset, was charged with drunken driving.

Robert Clark, 22, of 79 Brooks Ave., Quincy, was charged with drunken driving.

Tim Larkin, 25, of 6 Hilltop Road, Weymouth, was charged with drunken driving.

Video:http://www.patriotledger.com/homepage/x1816442914/Drunk-arrests-pile-up-with-aid-of-new-B-A-T-Mobile
 
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