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Road block nets 16 arrests

Photo by Laura Williams

Photo by Laura Williams

ALBANY, Ga. -- Many times a simple request for a driver's license at a traffic stop leads to more serious charges.

In the space of three hours Wednesday starting at 9:20 a.m., Albany Police Department officers arrested 16 people -- including at least one burglary suspect -- during a traffic checkpoint operation dubbed "Operation Road Block."

Most people simply showed their paperwork and rolled on after a brief stop. Others were not so lucky.

City officers assisted by Dougherty County Police Department officers, Albany-Dougherty Drug Unit staff and other agencies issued 43 citations, three warnings and completed 10 field interviews on top of the arrests.

"We are stopping vehicles and asking for licenses," said Albany police Deputy Chief Mark Scott. "We've found people with suspended licenses, expired tags and not wearing seatbelts. We've found them with warrants for probation violations and more."

The road blocks were set up on the 1400 block of North Washington Street and at the intersections of Sixth Avenue and Seventh Avenue and North Washington Street.

The road blocks were set so that anyone driving north on North Washington Street who spotted the stop ahead and tried to avoid it would turn right into another set of patrol cars waiting to corral them on the side streets.

"Many times when we check for licenses like this, a small check will lead to bigger arrests," said Phyllis Banks, Albany police spokeswoman. "This is a great tool for us to take criminals off the streets. People can look for us doing this a lot more."