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High Desert officers honored for keeping roads safe

Victorville deputy wins award for making 254 DUI arrests in 2011

MADD awards for 2011 arrests:

Top Arresting Officer

• Victorville Sheriff’s Department Deputy Kevin Riberich — 254 arrests

Century Awards

• California Highway Patrol Officer Jason Costello — 104 arrests

• CHP Officer Larry Harris — 112 arrests

• Victorville SD Deputy Pedro Ortiz — 114 arrests

• Hesperia SD Corporal Ryan Smith — 174 arrests

Sheriff’s Adelanto Station

• Deputy Brett Haynes — 19 arrests

• Deputy Travis James — 26 arrests

Sheriff’s Apple Valley Station

• Deputy Chris Crosswhite — 22 arrests

• Deputy William Gibbons — 27 arrests

Barstow Police Department

• Officer Peter D’Andrea — 12 arrests

• Officer Ronan Colleoc — 14 arrests

Sheriff’s Hesperia Station

• Deputy Kevin McCurdy — 21 arrests

• Deputy Brendan Motley — 24 arrests

Sheriff’s Victorville Station

• Deputy Troy Mooradian —78 arrests

Barstow Area CHP

• Officer Donald Perez — 23 arrests

• Officer Christopher McLeod — 25 arrests

Victorville Area CHP

• Officer Robert Grieve — 25 arrests

• Officer Rigoberto Olmos — 31 arrests

• Officer Christopher Denkers — 37 arrests

• Officer Tad Jeffrey — 39 arrests

• Officer David Burke — 40 arrests

• Officer Brian Diaz — 41 arrests

• Officer Jeffery Stout — 51 arrests

• Officer Shawn Gordon — 68 arrests

• Officer Jerry Martin — 68 arrests

VICTORVILLE • After being pulled over for driving under the influence outside of a bar, a woman told Victorville Deputy Kevin Riberich that people she drank with at the bar had started getting taxis because they were scared of being arrested.

In that moment, Riberich knew that the Victorville Station’s DUI Enforcement efforts were making a difference.

Riberich’s own efforts on the DUI Enforcement assignment earned him recognition from Mothers Against Drunk Driving as the “Top DUI Arresting Officer” in San Bernardino County with 254 arrests in 2011.

During Tuesday’s Victorville City Council meeting, Capt. Don Yoder presented the award to Riberich as well as two other Victorville officers: Deputy Pedro Ortiz with 114 DUI arrests and Deputy Troy Mooradian with 78 DUI arrests.

Victorville deputies were not the only ones honored by MADD, with a total of 25 High Desert officers from the Sheriff’s Department and California Highway Patrol recognized this year. Kari Robinson, program coordinator and victim advocate at MADD, said 350 officers from around San Bernardino County were honored in a ceremony on Nov. 15 for their continued efforts in reducing fatalities.

“Our officers that were recognized keep us safe in many ways, including on our roadways,” Robinson said.

There were 1,372 DUI arrests in the Victorville and Barstow area in 2011, looking only at the arrests made by Sheriff’s Department deputies and CHP officers honored by MADD.

This year, there have been 436 DUI arrests in Victorville and 151 DUI arrests in Apple Valley, according to information from the Sheriff’s Department.

Joaquin Zubieta, spokesperson for the CHP, says that DUI prevention is the CHP’s primary focus at night, and all CHP officers receive DUI training in the Academy.

The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department works directly with the Office of Traffic Safety and receives state funding for checkpoints and city-wide enforcements, according to spokesperson Cindy Bachman.

“For several years now we have been not only responsible for but committed to deterring drunk driving in the county,” Bachman said. “We see at the end of the year just how hard these deputies are working to remove drunk drivers from the roadways.”

From his work in DUI enforcement, Riberich explained that he doesn’t understand why people drive drunk.

“It’s not worth it. Call a friend, call a taxi,” Riberich said. “It’s not a matter of if you get arrested, it’s a matter of when. If someone keeps driving drunk over and over again, they will get caught.”

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