With extra patrols, Dagsboro PD logs increase in DUI arrests

DAGSBORO – Town of Dagsboro police are issuing a public safety reminder – and fair warning – following an uptick in DUI incidents this summer.

With additional patrols funded through the Office of Highway Safety, Dagsboro police have made 14 DUI arrests in the past 2 ½ months. The last two DUI arrests occurred this past weekend.

“For some reason, it’s a little above average compared to last year at this time,” said Dagsboro Police Sgt. Nicholas Disciullo.

Dagsboro Police Sgt. Nicholas Disciullo

Four of the 14 DUI arrests were under the age of 21, Sgt. Disciullo said.

Three arrests were on special paid initiatives, through extra patrols funded by the OHS.

“We’ve gotten a lot of support from Office of Highway. They’ve given us a lot of support – not just us but the entire state – and they are really cracking down on impaired driving, drugs and alcohol related,” Sgt. Disciullo said.

Specific patrols Dagsboro police have participated in are OHS-funded patrols where officers are on the lookout for impaired drivers, Sgt. Disciullo said.

“All our stops are based off the probable cause, a traffic violation,” said Sgt. Disciullo. “We make contact with the driver and if we feel there is a need to investigate a possible DUI further then we continue with our task. The more cars you stop the more potential you have of finding a DUI. We’ve been out on more patrols and we’ve just been more proactive. It’s a mixture, drug and alcohol related.”

Arrests came on patrols, not DUI checkpoints, which have been put on hold during COVID.

OHS is surveying agencies to see if they want to reopen checkpoints for end of year. “We’re in full support of it. We think that they are effective, and they are a great way to get impaired drivers off the roads,” Sgt. Disciullo said.

Additionally, Dagsboro’s five-member force – Chief Steven Flood, two other full-timers, plus two part-timers – is armed with two officers who are drug recognition experts, through a program provided by the OHS.

“Two of us are actually certified in recognizing people under influence of drugs,” Sgt. Disciullo said. “With that expertise I think it kind of adds an extra component to our DUI investigations, because of that extra training that we have had.”

So, the message from Dagsboro PD is clear: If you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs, do not drive.

“If you are not sure if you are under influence, or you don’t feel right, don’t drive, because we will get you,” said Sgt. Disciullo. “And it really comes down to the safety of yourself and the other people that you are putting at risk when you are out there on the road. If you are not sure, get a ride.”