News 2 rides along with Charleston County DUI enforcement team - WCBD-TV: News, Weather, and Sports for Charleston, SC

News 2 rides along with Charleston County DUI enforcement team

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H.E.A.T. patrol car H.E.A.T. patrol car

"They say if one person gets caught, they've done it eight other times without getting caught. There's a mindset they can get away with it, they'll just keep doing it until they get caught," Master Deputy Chris Craven said during a ride along with News 2's Haley Hernandez.

Craven works specifically with driving under the influence cases under the Highway Enforcement of Aggressive Traffic (H.E.A.T.) grant. Last week, Craven was named the top DUI enforcement officer for 2012 by the National Criminal Enforcement Association, and Master Deputy Shawn James was honored for his display of valor and courage during a duty critical incident.

News 2 spent Friday night cruising the Charleston County streets with the enforcement team. Craven is a drug recognition expert and was called for one suspected case of driving under the influence, and found what he was called to the scene for.

He examined a substance that was rolled into a dollar bill, "if it isn't perfect this will get thrown out in court," he said. Then confirmed it tested positive for cocaine.

Craven said he can detect the class of drugs influencing a driver just based on their behavior.

"So when we do the eye test... alcohol and some depressants cause involuntary jerking of the eyes as you follow stimulus back and forth. So marijuana, if that's all they've been doing you wouldn't have the stagnant, you'd just have the regular... but they'd show signs on the walk and turn or the one-legged stance which is the next one. so they'd have trouble with those tests and that's what we base it off," he said.

The early morning hours make it difficult for this father of three young children to enjoy his weekends but he said the job is worth it.

"Every person I stop is a potential life saved. Either the person I stop... they could run off the road and kill themselves or hurt someone else so by everyone we stop and take to jail, get them off the highway, you don't know how many people you could have saved because what if they went down the road and hit a car or something and killed some people... get them off the road and keep them from hurting themselves."

Friday night ended with a distribution of 10 traffic tickets, one DUI arrest and one arrest for possession of cocaine.

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