Recently, the Minnesota Department of Public Safety announced that Minnesota officers were adding extra DWI enforcement through Labor Day Weekend. This was part of a statewide campaign in support of the Toward Zero Deaths traffic safety program.

They added that driving while impaired doesn’t just mean drinking alcohol and driving, it also includes both legal and illegal drugs. Simply stated, impaired driving puts everyone on the road at risk regardless of which substance has been consumed.

Minnesota law enforcement has since released the results of this campaign and the number of arrests made in a short time is startling.

During the Labor Day DWI campaign, which actually ran from August 18 through September 4, officers, deputies, and troopers arrested 1,140 drivers for driving impaired.

Doug Menuez

That brings the total number of DWI arrests made by law enforcement across the state to 19,035 so far this year, which is up from the 18,223 arrests made at this time last year (as of September 11).

Here are some of the examples of the arrests that were made during the Labor Day campaign:

  • The Becker County Sheriff’s Office stopped a vehicle for speeding. The driver was arrested for a controlled substance DWI. Over 145 grams of methamphetamine and cocaine mixed with fentanyl were also recovered.
  • Blooming Prairie police arrested a driver for first-degree DWI. The driver had five prior convictions in the last 10 years.
  • The Chisago County Sheriff’s Office responded to a single-vehicle crash. Before deputies arrived, the passenger in the crash tried driving the vehicle from the scene. Both the driver and passenger were arrested for DWI.​​
  • A Minnesota State Patrol trooper in the Marshall district responded to a crash. An intoxicated driver rear-ended another vehicle at a stop sign. A breath test showed the driver had a 0.330 BAC. They were taken to detox due to the level of intoxication.
  • Oak Park Heights police arrested two different drivers for DWI. One from a road rage incident and the other from a wrong-way driving complaint.
    The Winona County Sheriff’s Office arrested the same driver twice in three days for DWI.
  • Minnesota State Patrol troopers stopped a driver for going 107 mph in a 70 mph zone. They arrested the driver for DWI with a 0.14 BAC. Another driver was speeding 99 mph in a 60 mph and was arrested for DWI with a 0.13 BAC.

Where were the drunkest drivers caught and arrested? The highest BAC levels were reported in the following counties:

  • Nobles County Sheriff’s Office (0.44)
  • St. Paul Police Department (0.43)
  • Faribault Police Department (0.41)
  • Anoka Police Department (0.39)
  • Crosby Police Department (0.377)​

Due to its high population, it's not shocking that a majority of the arrests were made in the Twin Cities metro area. The Twin Cities agencies with the most DWI arrests during the campaign included:

  • Minnesota State Patrol, District 2500 (Golden Valley): 84
  • St. Paul Police Department: 42
  • Minnesota State Patrol, District 2400 (Oakdale): 33
  • Shakopee Police Department: 18
  • Carver County Sheriff’s Office: 16

Unfortunately, outside of the Twin Cities metro area, Duluth had the most arrests. The greater Minnesota agencies with the most arrests included:

  • Minnesota State Patrol, District 2700 (Duluth): 23
  • Minnesota State Patrol, District 2600 (St. Cloud): 22
  • Morrison County Sheriff’s Office: 23
  • Mankato Department of Public Safety Police: 20
  • Wright County Sheriff’s Office: 20​

You can see the full results of the campaign through the link above. It also includes details on the Move Over Law, the new cannabis law, DWI consequences, and more.

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