DPS checkpoints questioned by critics

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Saturday, October 26, 2013 - 10:52am

The controversial checkpoint program has a name, Operation strong safety.

It lasted less than a month and cost the state millions.

Operation strong safety is over, and we have a better idea of what was accomplished during the three week long program.

The Texas department of public safety released figures from the random checkpoints held in the Rio Grande Valley.

Among the data, comparing the three week program to the previous three weeks.

177 unsafe trucks taken off the road.

Stolen vehicle recoveries increased by two thirds.

a 185 percent increase in currency seizures.

74 percent fewer felony pursuits.

The DPS points to those numbers as a successful program.

Critics choose to look beyond those numbers.

"We need to really question ourselves, if this is the kind of government, if this the kind of department we want to have.
 If we want to have somebody come and intimidate us, of course we're going to be paralyzed."

Sanchez was referring to reports that many people chose not to leave the house during operation strong safety for fear of encountering the checkpoints.

The operation was supposed to target motorist without licenses, insurance, or with registration problems and warrants.

And it produced 281 citations and 29 arrests for outstanding warrants.

The entire program cost taxpayers three point four million dollars.

The cost, was not included in the report.

"we're not talking about how much money it costs the state. To bring that many state troopers here. there's no mention of that. And i think that when we're talking about how much was invested and how much money it cost the businesses, i think we need it balanced."

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