• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
News Alert: 2 confirmed dead in plane crash near Haines - Read More
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
2m 24s

Citizen DUI task force helps police make dozens of arrests

By Joe Vigil 9:34 PM July 28, 2014
ANCHORAGE –

The more you drink and drive, the more likely it is that you’re going to run into the citizen DUI task force on Anchorage streets.

The problem for drunk drivers is they will never see volunteers coming because they use their own cars to help police track down offenders. Task force members call 911 if they spot a drunk driver. Police will send an officer, if a unit is available, to possibly make a DUI arrest.

KTVA 11 reported on the task force back in December. At that point, the citizen volunteer group was responsible for helping police make 19 DUI arrests. From August 2013 through this June, APD says the group has helped the department catch 103 drunk drivers.

“Some of those 103 might have crashed into somebody and killed or injured them before we got onto them,” said Anchorage Police Department Chief Mark Mew.

APD says volunteers have logged 3,242 hours of their own time on patrol. The department has also honored at least six men and women for individually donating more than 200 hours to the effort.

Task force volunteer Bruce Burns says he’s motivated by what happened to his brother after he returned home from the Vietnam War.

“My little brother got killed by a drunk driver,” Burns said. He said he doesn’t want it to happen to other people.

A number of volunteers have also received what’s called an ACE award. It goes to people who have helped police catch more than 10 drunk drivers.

Volunteer Nick Hornshuh works 40 hours a week Monday through Friday. On Fridays, just a few hours after getting off work, he’s back at work patrolling the streets.

“No weekend. This is my life for the weekends, is doing this,” Hornshuh said.

KTVA 11 caught up with Howdi Rambur around 3:40 a.m. on a recent weekend. We asked why he makes the effort.

“The reason I’m out here is because it’s got to stop,” Rambur said.

The citizen DUI task force was set up last summer after a wave of suspected drunk driving deaths. Included in those deaths are 15-year-olds Jordyn Durr and Brooke McPheters, who were struck by a suspected drunk driver while on a walking path.

KTVA 11 just learned that their parents may join the citizen DUI task force. They’ve all applied to be part of the Anchorage Police Citizen Academy and may eventually hit the streets themselves looking for drunk drivers.

“Let’s do the next step and lets help our police officers out however we can. If it means riding in our car at three in the morning, or two in the morning until six in the morning, then that’s what we do,” said Brooke McPheter’s father Gary.

Police encourage others to join the Anchorage Police Citizen Academy. The application deadline is Aug. 15. You can get more information about the academy at apcaaa.org.

Latest Stories

  • News

    Remains of Arkansas soldier killed in Colony Glacier plane crash returned home

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on May 27, 18:52

    An Arkansas National Guardsman who was killed in plane crash in Alaska 65 years ago has finally made it home. Staff Sgt. Robert Dale Van Fossen was laid to rest Saturday in Little Rock. Arkansas governor Asa Hutchinson ordered flags lowered to half mast in Van Fossen’s honor. His remains were found among the wreckage of […]

  • News

    Historic planes head to Dutch Harbor to mark 75th anniversary of Aleutians battle

    by Dave Leval on May 27, 18:43

    John Pletcher’s invitation is too good to ignore — a chance for myself to get back in the sky for the first time in a while. It takes his JRF-5 Grumman Goose just seconds to take flight at Anchorage’s Merrill Field, then it’s off to Dutch Harbor, to take part in the 75th anniversary of […]

  • News

    2 confirmed dead in Southeast Alaska plane crash

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on May 27, 14:46

    Last updated at 3:45 p.m. on Saturday, May 27 Two people are confirmed dead and one is in critical condition following a fatal plane crash near the small Southeast Alaska community of Haines. The crash happened around 11 a.m. Saturday, according to NTSB Alaska chief Clint Johnson. Witnesses reported the plane crashed shortly after takeoff. Two of […]

  • News

    Feds to gain control over Kuskokwim king salmon management

    by Associated Press on May 27, 12:55

    BETHEL, Alaska (AP) – Starting next month, the management of king salmon on a southwestern Alaska river will transfer from state control to federal. KYUK-AM reports that as of June 12, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will begin to oversee the salmon living on lower and middle Kuskokwim River. Under federal law, the switch is […]

  • Lifestyle

    Gregg Allman of The Allman Brothers Band dies at age 69

    by Associated Press on May 27, 11:53

    SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) – A publicist for rock legend Gregg Allman says the organist and singer for The Allman Brothers Band has died. He was 69. Ken Weinstein confirmed Saturday that Allman died at his home in Savannah, Georgia. Allman had cancelled some 2016 tour dates for health reasons. In March 2017, he canceled performances […]

  • Man hurling racial slurs kills 2 on Portland train

    by Associated Press on May 27, 10:35

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – The Latest on a stabbing on a Portland, Oregon, train that left two dead (all times local): 9:45 a.m. The 35-year-old Oregon man identified by authorities in the fatal stabbing of two people on a Portland light-rail train has a criminal record that includes stints in prison. Court records located by […]

  • News

    Juneau officials to consider zoning rules on historic homes

    by Associated Press on May 27, 10:24

    JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) – The city and borough of Juneau is considering relaxing zoning rules on historic homes. KTOO-FM reported Friday that Juneau and Douglas homeowners that want to remodel or rebuild historic homes are faced with zoning laws that complicate the process. That’s because many of the rules did not exist when the historic neighborhoods […]

  • News

    5 new AST K-9 teams hit the streets

    by Dave Leval on May 26, 21:04

    Friday was graduation day at the Alaska State Troopers headquarters. Five K-9 dogs were certified to detect drugs. Troopers now have a total of six dog teams for drug detection, but two of them, Mocha and Mak, are different; they’re the first dogs to not be trained to sniff out marijuana. Mocha and Mak were […]