Arrests Dozens of Drunk Drivers Over 10-Day Operation


Deputies arrested dozens of drunk drivers throughout the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office’s 10-day “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” Labor Day weekend campaign. The saturation is customary over holiday weekends, and unfortunately, reckless and intoxicated drivers were not hard to find. One man even crashed his vehicle into an HCSO patrol unit with two deputies inside.
On Saturday, September 6, 2020, at 4:43 a.m., Cole Gatlin, 21, struck an HCSO patrol unit on eastbound 60 Highway East in Valrico. No one was injured and Gatlin was arrested after blowing twice the legal limit. In several other incidents, drivers failed Field Sobriety Exercises and ended up in jail as well. From Friday, August 28, 2020 to Monday, September 7, 2020, deputies arrested and charged 61 drivers with DUI and issued 151 citations.
Local waterways were also heavily patrolled. Though no BUIs were detected, HCSO’s Marine Unit issued two citations and gave 9 warnings.
Pictures of some of the stops are provided below.
“While most people are relaxing over the holiday weekend, our deputies remain alert, vigilantly patrolling our roadways and waterways,” said Sheriff Chad Chronister. “Through their efforts we were able to get dozens of drunk drivers off the streets, and with citations, reminded other drivers to follow traffic laws. It’s imperative that every single day, every time they get behind the wheel, drivers make safety their top priority.”