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Police say holiday has quiet start

July 05, 2002|by MARLO BARNHART

marlob@herald-mail.com

With the July 4 holiday officially running through Sunday this year, police in the Tri-State area are trying to ensure the long weekend will be safe for everyone.

"We have two extra troopers on per shift writing tickets on the interstate," said Sgt. E.D. Burnett of the West Virginia State Police in the Eastern Panhandle.

In Martinsburg, the annual fireworks display at the War Memorial Park Thursday night was reportedly halted for a while because of some fights but a park neighbor said the fireworks resumed after a brief pause.

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The Washington County Sheriff's Department also beefed up patrols for the holiday, adding two deputies on duty looking for intoxicated or impaired drivers.

"That's in addition to the regular four deputies working per shift," Sgt. Travers Ruppert said.

Police in the region reported only routine calls Thursday.

"It's just been a real quiet Thursday so far," said Sherry Biron of the Frederick County Sheriff's Department.

Deputies in Frederick joined with Maryland State Police for a special sobriety checkpoint that was expected to continue into early this morning.

That effort was planned in conjunction with Checkpoint Strikeforce, a coalition including the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and state and local transportation and law enforcement agencies from the mid-Atlantic states.

State police Lt. Greg Johnston said a sobriety checkpoint is scheduled July 12-13 in Washington County.

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