BYH ECU Trustees. Of course you were not told about the lawsuit against Vidant. Harry Smith and Bill Roper control it...

Booze It and Lose It targets St. Patrick's celebrations

1 of 2

Officials from The Governor’s Highway Safety Program, along with law enforcement and community volunteers gathered at Sup Dogs in Greenville, to hold the statewide Booze It & Lose It St. Patrick’s Day Kickoff in Greenville, on Thursday,.


By Tyler Stocks
The Daily Reflector

Friday, March 15, 2019

Nearly 370 people died in North Carolina due to alcohol related crashes in 2017 — a statistic government officials and law enforcement agencies are trying to change.  

That’s why the state’s Booze It and Lose It campaign brought its BAT mobile to Greenville on Thursday as revelers prepare to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day festivities through the weekend.

“This is a campaign we do all across North Carolina during the St. Patrick’s Day weekend to publicize the importance of not drinking and driving,” Mark Ezzell, director of the Governor’s Highway Safety Program said during a news conference in front of the mobile blood alcohol testing (BAT) lab in downtown Greenville. 

The publicity blitz is the educational component of Booze It and Lose It, Ezzel said. The second component includes checkpoints and enforcement to catch drunken and impaired drivers in Greenville and across the state, he said.

“You’re going to see law enforcement that has partnered with us all across the state. They’re going to really be out in force this weekend keeping North Carolinians safe,” Ezzell said.

The Booze It and Lose It campaign is in its 25th year, and Ezzell said the program is working well to reduce alcohol related crashes.  

“We know it’s made a difference. We’ve seen drunk driving and impaired driving crashes decrease in North Carolina but we want to see them decrease more.”

Currently, the state has seven BAT mobiles to assist law enforcement checkpoints by processing suspects on the spot.

The state of the art vehicles are equipped with breath alcohol testing instruments, officer workstations, wireless printers, cellphones, Wi-Fi hotspots, finger printing equipment and some even have jail cells and a magistrate’s office on board.

“These things go all across North Carolina to make things easier for law enforcement to catch folks who’ve broken the law,” Ezzell said. 

In North Carolina, it is illegal to drive a vehicle while noticeably impaired or with an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or higher. When driving a commercial motor vehicle, the limit is 0.04. 

Motorists caught driving while impaired could face jail time, lose their driving privileges and pay an average of $10,000 in fines, towing fees and other expenses associated with a DWI.

The BAT mobile wasn’t the only tool to promote the campaign Thursday afternoon.  

Volunteers including students from East Carolina University canvassed area neighborhoods near the main campus to help spread the message.  

“Part of the message we’re trying to get out here is most people, including college students do the right thing,” Ezzell said. “When in your college, you’re under the mistaken impression that everybody on campus drinks. That’s not true. The fact is, most folks don’t, and those that do, generally do so in a more responsible manner than many of their suitemates or roommates may think,” Ezzell said.  

Ezzell added, most people in North Carolina “wear their seat belt, they drive sober and they drive responsibly; it’s just a few outliers.”

Contact Tyler Stocks at tstocks@reflector.com or 252-329-9566.  


Humans of Greenville


Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.

Crime and Rescue

May 25, 2019

A bank teller has been charged with conspiring with a friend to rob a bank inside a Greenville Walmart on Sunday, according to a news release issued by the Greenville Police Department.

Officers responded to the robbery at the Woodforest Bank inside the Walmart at 210 S.W. Greenville Blvd. Police…

May 24, 2019

Gregory Parks, who was convicted in the kidnapping and killing of a 20-year-old Bailey woman, received a fair trial and one without legal errors, the N.C. Court of Appeals ruled on Wednesday.

A three-judge panel upheld Parks’ November 2017 convictions, including first-degree murder, in the…


May 24, 2019

The Greenville Police Department is warning residents about a scam involving fake red light camera citations. The department on its Facebook page announced that two people reported they received an emailed red light citation notice.

The email does not specifically mention the Greenville Police…

May 23, 2019

A Greenville man has been arrested and charged with attempted murder following a double shooting Thursday morning at a home in Belvoir.   

Tylif Staton, 26, and Devonta Washington, 26, both of Greenville, were injured in the shooting, the sheriff’s office reported.

Staton, 449…


May 22, 2019

Editor’s Note: Several items from 2018 were inadvertently published in Tuesday’s crime reports and listed as occurring on Saturday. The correct reports from Saturday, May 18, are included here today.

A man suffered severe lacerations from an assault with a deadly weapon at his home on…

May 21, 2019

A man robbed a bank located inside the Walmart on Greenville Boulevard  and made off with nearly $9,000 in cash, according to the Greenville Police Department.

The robbery took place shortly before 11:51 a.m. Sunday at Woodforest National Bank, 210 S.W. Greenville Blvd. Police are…


May 20, 2019

Two men have been jailed on four counts of attempted first-degree murder and other charges after shots were fired in a Belvoir-area residence and suspects led deputies on a chase, according to warrants and a news release.

Pitt County Sheriff’s Office deputies were called to 954…


May 19, 2019

As Paula Dance campaigned for her first term as Pitt County sheriff in 2018, she routinely identified the opioid epidemic as the most pressing challenge facing law enforcement. Among her mantras was, “You can’t arrest your way out of the crisis.”

Arresting users for drug-related…


May 18, 2019

About $300 in food items were stolen from a vending machine, according to a case report released by the Greenville Police Department.

The incident took place between 9:40 p.m. May 15 and 9:10 a.m. May 16 on the 2200 block of University Suites Drive.

The report did not specify if the vending machine…

May 17, 2019

The three Nash County deputies who were involved in the Feb. 9 shooting of 28-year-old Jonathan Ramirez will not face charges in connection with the incident, according to a statement released on Wednesday by District Attorney Robert Evans.

After a request by the Rocky Mount Telegram concerning the…

228 stories in Crime and Rescue. Viewing 1 through 10.
«First Page   «Previous Page        
Page 1 of 23
        Next Page»   Last Page»