What would happen if law enforcers stopped hundreds of cars over the course of a couple days? How many criminals and how much contraband might they find?
A Colorado State Patrol-described "large-scale law-enforcement operation" just conducted in Mesa County provides an idea: over a hundred citations, a handful of fugitives captured and more than ninety pounds of marijuana seized. And that's not all.
Get a complete data breakdown below.
From Friday morning to Saturday night, according to a Colorado State Patrol release, the CSP, in conjunction with the Mesa County Sheriff's Office and police departments in Grand Junction and Fruita, took part in an effort meant to "interdict criminal activity such as auto theft and drug trafficking and to encourage safe driving behaviors through strict enforcement of traffic laws."
The numbers? Over that 48-hour span, troopers contacted 336 drivers, with 236 of them stopped due to what's describes as "dangerous or improper driving behavior." The total number of violations came to 393, meaning that some people allegedly broke more than one law.
For instance, a trooper found "92 pounds of high-grade marijuana concealed in a vehicle and packaged for distribution." Here's a CSP photo of the haul:
Also stopped was "a vehicle with a false compartment designed to transport methamphetamine."
Scofflaws who weren't involved with drugs were found as well. The CSP located two stolen cars and four fugitives wanted on warrants for "multiple DUI violations, habitual traffic offenses, careless driving causing death and criminally negligent child abuse."
More digits? Eight people were busted for "drug/alcohol violations," one stolen handgun with an altered serial number was recovered and a total of 106 drivers received citations, including one guy who was zooming at more than 110 miles per hour and allegedly forcing other motorists off the road.
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Not that everyone wound up with a ticket or a personalized set of handcuffs. The CSP notes that 290 motorists "were educated through verbal and written warnings for less serious violations."
Speaking for those of us who've heard about warnings but never actually received one in lieu of a ticket, we're grateful to know they actually exist.
More from our News archive circa September: "1,342 DUI busts in Labor Day enforcement period, nine alcohol-related deaths."