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ONLY ON 3: Mobile apps tip drivers to police checkpoints

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — In today’s world social media constantly changes the way things around us work. But are new apps affecting the way that local law enforcement does its job?

“A DWI checkpoint serves a multitude of facets in law enforcement,” New Hanover Co. Sheriff’s Office spokesman Sgt. Jerry Brewer said. “They’re a needed and useful tool that we do use. Not only are they there to check for drunken drivers, but for people who have warrants, or for people who may or may not be operating the car illegally.”

In today’s cat and mouse world of legal maneuvering a new advancement has been made by today’s social media world. Checkpoint apps now flood the Android and iPhone app stores. There are even text services which will tip you off, and not everyone is happy about it.

“I don’t know if I’m for it, because people, if they were to find out there is a roadblock and go around it and stuff, then they could cause accidents and stuff like that,” driver Allison Godwin said. “I have been through three or four in the last couple of months. I get nervous and start to shake a little bit. I feel like they’re going to something wrong or something.”

Police say that if DWI checkpoint apps like this one can keep even one driver from strapping in and starting their car that these apps are doing their job.

“We consider it a success if the texts are going out over Facebook or Instagram whatever social media somebody may use to alert somebody that there is a checkpoint setup,” said Chief Deputy Charlie Miller or the Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office. “That keeps a drunk driver from behind the wheel, and we don’t mind that.”

Local law enforcement says it will continue to do random roadblocks in our area. They say the best way to avoid them if you have been drinking is to take a cab or simply stay at home.

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