Glen Burnie, MD (October 26, 2021) – The Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) on Sunday recognized 75 law enforcement officers from 18 state, county and local police agencies for their commitment to enforcing Maryland’s impaired driving laws. The annual Impaired Driving Law Enforcement Awards, a joint effort of the MDOT Motor Vehicle Administration’s (MDOT MVA) Highway Safety Office and the Washington Regional Alcohol Program, honors officers dedicated to eliminating impaired driving crashes, injuries and deaths.
“Too many Maryland families have lost a loved one due to the reckless actions of impaired drivers,” said MDOT MVA Administrator Chrissy Nizer, who also serves as Governor Larry Hogan’s Highway Safety Representative. “We are grateful to our law enforcement officers who day in and day out are dedicated to protecting the lives of citizens and preventing countless tragedies by removing impaired drivers from the road.”
The awards ceremony was held in Ocean City, and recognized officers for DUI enforcement – including three who made more than 100 arrests each: Frederick County Sheriff’s Office Corporal Nathan Rector conducted 139 arrests, Montgomery County Department of Police Officer Patrick Kepp conducted 126 arrests, and Maryland State Police Corporal Anthony Wallace of the State Police Impaired Driving Reduction Effort team conducted 104 arrests. At the event, officials also thanked those who serve as Drug Recognition Experts. The combined efforts of law enforcement officers statewide resulted in more than 14,100 DUI arrests in 2020.
The Noah Leotta Memorial Award, named for a Montgomery County Department of Police officer killed by an impaired driver in December 2015 while working a holiday DUI patrol, was awarded to Trooper Brendan White and Trooper Dillon White, both of the Maryland State Police, for their dedication and passion for safety enforcement.
Over the past five years in Maryland, there have been more than 33,260 crashes involving drivers impaired by drugs and/or alcohol. Those crashes resulted in 753 deaths and 15,365 injuries. In addition to high visibility impaired driving enforcement operations throughout the year, the MDOT MVA’s Highway Safety Office runs an educational campaign called Be the SOBER Driver and Be the MAKE A PLAN Driver to encourage everyone to make a plan for a sober ride home.
Learn more about the MDOT MVA’s Highway Safety Office at ZeroDeathsMD.gov or on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at @ZeroDeathsMD.