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New Year’s DWI arrests up on LI, except East End

First responders at the scene of an accident

First responders at the scene of an accident and an overturned vehicle on the Long Island Expressway at exit 49 in Melville on Jan.1, 2016. The driver of the overturned car was injured after his vehicle was rear-ended by a driver charged with drunken driving, according to Suffolk police. Credit: Stringer News Service

Police on Long Island issued tickets for 58 drunken-driving violations over the New Year’s holiday — an increase over last year’s enforcement, except on the East End.

The Suffolk police department reported making 20 DWI arrests between 4 p.m. on New Year’s Eve and 8 a.m. Friday. There were 12 DWI arrests reported last year.

Deputy Suffolk Police Commissioner Tim Sini credited the increased number of arrests to the department’s stepped-up enforcement patrols.

Among those arrested in Suffolk were a Ronkonkoma man who struck a bicyclist who was crossing against a red light in Islandia. The bicyclist is now listed in serious condition at Stony Brook University Hospital, police said. Another was a driver from Elmont who police said was speeding with three passengers in his car Friday morning when he rear-ended another car on the Long Island Expressway in Melville. Four people were treated for minor injuries, police said.

In Nassau, county police made 16 drunken-driving arrests between 7 p.m. on New Year’s Eve and 7 a.m. Friday. Last year, there were 12 reported.

DWI arrests in the East End were down, however. The DWI Task Force there conducted roving sobriety and safety checkpoints with increased patrols thoughout the Town of Riverhead. The task force, composed Riverhead Police Department, Southold Police Department, Suffolk County Police Department and the New York State Police Department, reported 5 DWI arrests — down from 10 last year.

A State Police spokesman said troopers issued tickets for 10 DWI-related offenses in Nassau and seven DWI-related offenses in Suffolk from the start of New Year’s Eve through Friday morning. State Police said figures from last year were not available.

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story misstated the total number of arrests made and the number of people arrested by State Police because of incorrect information provided by a State Police spokesman.

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