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Drunken Driving Arrests for 18-year-olds and Under on the Rise

With three months of the year left to go, 2012 has already exceeded 2011 by six teen DUI arrests.

California Highway Patrol arrested six minors on suspicion of drunken driving during the summer, bringing the year's total number DUI suspects aged 18 and under to 16 for Marin County.

There have already been more DUI arrests for that age group than last year, which had a total of six arrests, according to Sgt. Marcus Bartholomew. Marin CHP officers made most of the arrests on the freeways and unincorporated county roadways.

To date, 16 suspects under the age of 18 were arrested for DUI, three for alcohol possession and two from public intoxication. In 2011, only 10 suspects under the age of 18 were arrested for DUI, but alcohol possession and public intoxication were higher.

CHP arrested 22 underage drinkers from ages 19 to 20, compared to 50 from 2011. On Sept. 25, a 19-year-old Kentfield woman was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence, having a blood alcohol content level of more than .08 percent, and being involved in a hit and run collision.

Authorities anticipate an increase in DUI arrests overall and in these age groups with the upcoming holidays, winter break and New Year’s Eve. 

"As parents leave town for vacations and leave high school and returning college age children at home, we can expect more house parties with underage teen drinking and drug use throughout Marin," Bartholomew said in a release.

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