Employees of the Commercial Vehicle Inspection Unit of the Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles are fully empowered law enforcement officers in Vermont. Quite often the Inspectors are called upon to exercise that authority.
First, while on his way home from work in early November, an Inspector came upon a vehicle operator that was going the wrong way on a street in Essex Jct. The Inspector stopped the vehicle and arrested the operator on suspicion of DUI Drugs. A Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) evaluation was done by Vermont State Police and an evidentiary blood sample was given. The driver was transferred to the custody of the Dept. of Corrections until no longer impaired.
Second, while on his way home (again), the Inspector was asked to back up a State Police Sergeant at an active burglary in progress in Underhill. A Williston Police Department unit responded as well. Two males had smashed windows and were inside the store committing a burglary. Upon arrival by the law enforcement officers, two male juveniles (8th graders) were taken into custody and property was recovered. The Inspector stayed on scene until other State Police troopers could get to that location.
Oh, and lest we forget, distracted drivers sometimes are affected by what is called cognitive blindness . . . it means that the brain does not comprehend what the eye sees. Case in point: recently an Inspector stopped a vehicle for following his MARKED police cruiser too closely. Turns out the operator was talking on his cell phone at the time. Apparently, the operator was so deep in his cell phone conversation that his brain did not register that the vehicle he was following was, in fact, a police cruiser!! A ticket was issued for a 2nd offense cell phone violation. The penalty for violating the Vermont hand-held cell phone law is between $250 and $500 . . . quite expensive for not paying attention.
It never seems to end.