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Courts Honored For Efforts to Curb Drunk Driving

Posted: Monday, May 24, 2010

Hennepin County DWI Court and Beltrami County DWI Court will be honored by Minnesotans for Safe Driving (MSD) on May 26 for their efforts to reduce drunk driving and improve highway safety.

MSD, which assists victims of traffic crashes and educates the public about the dangers of impaired and drunk driving, will host the event to mark its ten-year anniversary and "to express appreciation to those who have gone above and beyond to help protect our roadways."  Other honorees include the Star Tribune newspaper; Night Cap & Safe & Sober Programs; the Minnesota State Patrol: several law enforcement agencies; Jean Ryan, Alcohol Programs Coordinator, Minnesota Office of Traffic Safety; and two law enforcement officers.

"The Fourth Judicial District DWI Court Team in Hennepin County is honored to be recognized for their efforts and for the stunning results they have achieved in preventing drunk drivers from re-offending," said DWI Court Lead Judge John Holahan.  "Over the last three years we have seen more than 70 of our participants graduate from our program and return to society and their families as sober, law-abiding citizens, driving legally with a valid driver's license and insurance.  We are saving lives and helping offenders to recover from alcoholism.  For all of us, it is the most rewarding and important work we have ever done."  Judges Gary Larson and Jack Nordby also hear cases in Hennepin County DWI court. 

"The Beltrami County DWI Court Team is appreciative and honored to receive recognition for their work in DWI Court and with Ignition Interlock," said Judge Shari Schluchter.  "We are committed to public safety and changing the lives of our participants. Ignition Interlock is an important tool in this effort, allowing individuals mobility where there is so little option for mass transit, but still ensuring public safety.  DWI Court has changed the lives of so many individuals in our county. It has been a privilege for all of us to serve on the DWI Court Team."

Who: Officials from Hennepin County DWI Court and Beltrami County DWI Court, officials from law enforcement agencies, advocates from Minnesotans for Safe Driving, Minnesota crash victims and their families

What: Awards ceremony

When: 10:30 a.m., Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Where: Hennepin County Sheriff's Patrol Headquarters, 9401 83rd Avenue North, Brooklyn Park, MN  55455