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Troopers descend on lakes for Fourth

‘Saturation’ patrol nets three arrests

Staff writer

If you thought you spotted an unusual number of state troopers on the roads around Marion County’s lakes Saturday night — you were right.

From midnight until 2 p.m. on the Fourth seven troopers patrolled roads around the reservoir and county lake looking drunken drivers and other trouble, according to Ben Gardner, public resource officer for the KHP.

Three arrested Sunday on suspicion of driving under the influence were: Jack R. Branson, 37, Marion; Jaden A. Cutsinger, 24, Wichita; and Derrick E. Ratzloff, 24, Marion.

The scheduled patrol was in response to citizen’s complaints about drunken drivers and people riding in golf carts or four wheelers, he said.

“Officers frequently hear concerns about impaired drivers, open containers, or minors with alcohol, or people driving four wheelers and golf carts. Doing things they shouldn’t,” he said.

A saturation patrol elevates the visibility of officers as they help drivers who run into trouble and perform traffic stops.

“We were not doing a checklane. We were not stagnant, letting them come to us,” he said. “We were elevating the manpower in the area.”

Holiday weekends present more of an opportunity for impaired drivers as many in the county flock to the county’s lakes.

“It’s best the highway patrol is proactive in reacting to concerns of the public and are there to prevent crashes or impaired drivers on the roadway,” he said.

“It is important for the highway patrol to be visible and active. That’s what we tried to accomplish Saturday.”

Last modified July 8, 2020

 

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