Drugs, alcohol targeted in Coffs Cup police blitz
ALARMING numbers of P-plate drivers have been nabbed for drug-driving during a police blitz in Coffs Harbour this week.
Coffs Clarence police were in full force for the Carlton MID 2015 Coffs Harbour Gold Cup with operations targeting drugs and alcohol on the track and in town.
On Thursday, 16 drivers were caught driving under the influence of drugs including 11 P-plate drivers.
Coffs Clarence crime manager Detective Inspector Darren Jameson said he was concerned by the results.
"P-plate drivers are not experienced drivers and then to throw on a prohibitor such as drugs is a major concern for police," Insp Jameson said.
"The message we were getting is that they didn't understand how the drug would affect their driving and most believed they could use the drug the day before and would be okay to drive.
"Harm minimisation of drugs needs to be looked at in terms of how we educate young people - not about the safe usage of drugs, but deterring them from using illicit substances."
Police also used drug dogs at the entrance of the Coffs Harbour racecourse to screen patrons entering the venue.
Seven men were caught with the alleged possession of drugs including four carrying cocaine, two with methamphetamine and one carrying ecstasy.
They will appear in the Coffs Harbour Local Court on August 31.
As many as 30 extra police had also been deployed during the two-day operation to target alcohol-related crime in the community.
Insp Jameson said six drivers had been detected under the influence of alcohol on Thursday.
While police said patrons had been well behaved at the track, six people found themselves kicked out of the venue for intoxication.
On Thursday night, police responded to several alcohol-related incidents in Coffs Harbour.
By the numbers: Cup Day police operation
Seven men were detected with the alleged possession of illicit substances at the Coffs Harbour Racecourse. They were handed court attended notices to appear in Coffs Harbour Local Court on August 31.
• 41-year-old Coffs Harbour man, 1 gram of cocaine at 12:05pm
• 24-year-old man from Kialla, Victoria, 3 grams of cocaine, at 12:20pm
• 34-year-old Nambucca Heads man, 1 gram of cocaine, at 12:30pm
• 29 year old Beenleigh, QLD man, 1 gram of cocaine, at 12:40pm
• 19-year-old Karangi man, <1gm of ecstasy, at 1:30pm
• 45-year-old Woolgoolga man, <1gm methamphetamine and cannabis
• 34-year-old Glenreagh man, 1 gram of methamphetamine, at 1:45pm
• 16 people allegedly detected for driving under the influence of drugs
• 14 of those were for cannabis, two for methamphetamine
• 11 of the 16 drivers were P-platers
• Six drink drivers were nabbed by police during the operation on Thursday.
• Six people were kicked out of the Coffs Harbour Racecourse for intoxication.
• Police responded to a scuffle between dining patrons at an Indian restaurant on Harbour Dr.
• An off-duty officer detected a patron who was highly intoxicated and threatening patrons and staff at the Federal Hotel in Bellingen at 10:30pm. A senior constable attended and called for back-up. A scuffle then broke out between her and the man. She deployed capsicum spray and back-up responded. He was taken to Coffs Harbour Police Station and charged with a number of offences including resisting arrest.