MHP releases holiday enforcement totals

Staff Writer

The Mississippi Highway Patrol concluded its 2018 Fourth of July enforcement period, which began at 12:01 a.m. July 3 and ended at midnight on July 4, with a total of 4,594 citations and 41 DUI arrests on state, federal and interstate systems.

During the holiday enforcement period, MHP investigated 61 crashes with 2 fatalities and 17 injuries.

MHP recorded a dramatic increase in citations issued along with a significant decrease in traffic crashes investigated.

During the same time frame in 2017, MHP issued 2,217 citations with 102 traffic crashes investigated.

MHP attributed the increase in citations and the decrease in crashes to the addition of new troopers along with responsible decisions by motorists.

MHP Troop G reported 271 hazard citations, 157 non-hazard citations, four DUIs, zero drug arrests, one felony arrest, zero public drunk citations, 35 seat belt citations, 11 child restraint citations and three motorist assists.

MHP Troop G covers Calhoun, Clay, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Lowndes, Monroe, Noxubee, Oktibbeha, Webster and Winston counties.

MHP Troop G responded to eight collisions, none of which were fatal or alcohol-related, causing two injuries.

MHP Troop G Master Sergeant Criss Turnipseed said the number of arrests and citations for Troop G was lower this year, partly because the Fourth of July fell on a Wednesday and less people were traveling than if it had been a long weekend.

“It was definitely more than a normal Tuesday or Wednesday because there was a little more travel, but if you compare that to if it had been a long weekend and people were going out of town to the beach or the lake it’s less,” Turnipseed said. “Most people had to work on Thursday and didn’t travel too far, but we still saw a little more than we would on a regular week
day as far as enforcement activity.”

The only fatal accident occurred at approximately 8:34 p.m. July 3 in Marion County. MHP responded to a 2013 Chevrolet passenger vehicle driven by Kevin Allen, 40, of Jackson, traveling eastbound
on US 98.

The vehicle left the roadway, overturned and collided with trees.

Right front passenger Lacurtis Floyd, 22, of McComb, was transported to Forrest General Hospital where he died due to injuries sustained in crash.

Right rear passenger Damian Swarptue, 26, of Hattiesburg, was pronounced dead on scene. Allen and left rear passenger Tykevious Durr, 20, of Hattiesburg, were both transported to Forrest General hospital with moderate injuries.

The crash remains under investigation by MHP.