23ABC Community Connection


Kern County Probation Department Awarded Grant to Supervise DUI Offenders

Posted at 7:14 PM, Oct 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-14 22:14:43-04

BAKERSFIELD, Calif.  — The Kern Probation Department is the recipient of a one-year, $176,950.00 grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety to monitor high-risk, repeat DUI offenders.

“Driving under the influence (DUI) is a serious criminal matter that can have devasting results. Repeat felony DUI offenders pose a significant risk to our community. This DUI Offender Grant allows us to create a specialized DUI offender caseload with a dedicated probation officer. That probation officer focuses on proven strategic tactics coupled with a high level of supervision with the goal of holding offenders accountable while also providing them with the opportunity to address their behavior. Community safety is always at the forefront of our strategy. We are thankful to OTS for our continued partnership as we play a part in Kern County’s overall response to DUI offenders,” Kern County Probation Department, Chief Probation Officer, TR Merickel said.

“Prevention is the best tool to address the significant traffic safety issue of DUI,” OTS Director Barbara Rooney said. “The goal of Probation programs are to help people convicted of DUI not to put themselves in a position to make the same mistake again.”

Grant funding will go toward:

• Collaboration with court officials and the prosecutor’s office to establish probation orders.

• Compliance with court-ordered terms of probation.

• Check-ins with probationers.

• Referrals for services to assist probationers.

• Alcohol testing.

• Officer training in Standard Field Sobriety Test.

• Warrant service operation and/or probationer driver’s license enforcement operation.

The grant program runs from Oct. 1 to Sept. 30, 2021.

Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.