Thirty arrested in one night, most for drunk driving

Police Commissioner, Fuiavaili'ili Egon Keil, has expressed concerns about the number of people arrested on Friday night, saying most of them were caught driving under the influence of alcohol.

In a telephone interview with the Samoa Observer, the Police chief said over 30 people were arrested with 23 of them – including three women – facing charges of driving under the influence of alcohol.

“Three of those people we’ve arrested for driving drunk are females. Just one night, we’ve arrested over 30 people and that’s a bit too high. It’s a higher number than the normal,” he said in the interview.

“And that’s the stuff I really need to get out there because I already talked about this that we need to keep our roads safe and yet, it seems like people just keep on going.

“In one night on a Friday night and so tonight’s [Saturday] going to be another issue like death assault, fighting and a lot of them are involving alcohol.

“Drunk driving, fights, brawls and insulting words, domestic violence and the majority of these cases we’ve been finding out it involves some form of alcohol.”

The Police Commissioner warned motorists that there will be more roadblocks during the long weekend and people should focus on avoiding arrest by following the law.

“If you’re going to drive, you better not be drinking. We do not want to arrest anyone but if we have to we will,” he added. 

When asked how long the arrested 30-plus people will remain in jail, Fuiavaili'ili said they will be bailed.

“The drunk drivers are most likely remanded to liberty [bail] until their mention day so we try not to keep anyone, especially during such weekends like these where people should be with their families,” he said.

“But we certainly don’t want our jails to be full too. It was pretty packed last night.

“Every time you hop into a car, you should be expecting there’s going to be a roadblock and a cop is going to pull you over and you’re expecting to be pulled over and check if you’re drunk.

“A lot of resources are wasted on such simple things whole there are a lot of taxis around to call for a ride, but yet people are still taking the risk of getting arrested, and that’s the only people we could find but imagine all those other people we couldn’t find.”

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