By MARCY J. LEVINSON
Daily Commercial Staff Writer
A driver’s license checkpoint at the busy tri-city exchange between Eustis, Mount Dora, and Umatilla yielded nearly 1,000 vehicles.
Eustis Police Det. Elena Breedlove, who orchestrated the checkpoint, called the four-hour Friday night operation a success.
Breedlove said the area needed the proactive measure to remind citizens that Florida statutes require motorists to have in their possession a valid driver’s license. “It helps promote safety in the neighborhood,” she said. The check point stopped traffic in all four directions of the intersection of County Roads 44 and 452, near the Lake County Fairgrounds.
Lake County resident Margaret Anschutz was elated when Eustis Officer Shane McSheehy asked to see her license.
“I just got a brand new license today with a new picture,” she said. “You’re the first one to see it!”
However, Eustis resident Michael Nash, 20, was not near as happy when he was caught driving without a license. He was arrested on a charge of violation of probation for domestic violence. He was taken to the Lake County jail and is being held on $10, 000, according to Eustis Police Sgt. Adam Donaldson.
“This kind of check point is beneficial not just for driver’s licenses, but also leads to other citations, warnings and arrests,” he said.
Mount Dora Police Sgt. Robert Bell, one of three Mount Dora officers used to support the one Umatilla and six Eustis officers, said the event was a good opportunity to work mutual support with the other agencies for proactive policing measures.
“This is good to do, because many people who don’t have licenses probably don’t’ have insurance and if they get in a wreck, the other person has to pay. It is just a good checks-and-balance system for the public,” said Bell.