Greensboro Police Officer Earns Top State Honors for Getting Impaired Drivers Off the Road
GREENSBORO, NC (Jan. 3, 2018) – Greensboro police officer A.D. Reed was recognized by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services as the state’s top Drug Recognition Expert of 2017 for his exemplary efforts in getting impaired drivers off the road.
A Drug Recognition Expert is a law enforcement officer who is trained to recognize impairment in drivers who are under the influence of drugs other than, or in addition to, alcohol. They are trained to follow a 12-step protocol to evaluate impairment.
Officers become DREs after being certified by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration on standardized field sobriety testing, and then completing 16 hours of training before entering DRE School, a 64-hour Drug Evaluation and Classification Program, and 40-60 hours of field certification.
Reed was nominated by his peers to receive this award because of “the high standards he has set for others to follow and, his hard work and his efforts to promote the DRE program,” according to Capt. Jonathan Franks, Commander of the Special Operations Unit.
“I was totally shocked to receive this award,” said Reed who has been certified as a DRE for nearly ten years. “It is a great honor to be recognized and respected by my peers for the work that I do. I’m passionate about getting impaired drivers off the road, and protecting the lives of everyone who uses our roadways.”
The testimony of DRE officers in court is used to prosecute cases of suspected drugged driving because of the limitations of toxicology testing. Blood tests may detect the presence of a substance, but the tests used do not measure the quantity of substance ingested or whether amount of the substance is sufficient to cause impairment in an individual. Thus, the testimony of a DRE is often needed to show impairment.
“Officer Reed’s commitment to traffic safety is just exceptional,” said Police Chief Wayne Scott. “He is proactive in his efforts to get impaired drivers off the street, and takes every opportunity to educate people on safe driving practices. I’m incredibly proud of him, and he’s very much earned this honor.”
Reed joined GPD in 2000, and has served as a member of the Traffic Safety Unit and Crash Reconstruction Unit since 2010. He is one of three DREs in the Greensboro Police Department. For earning Drug Recognition Expert of 2017 for NC, Reed will receive a plaque and a trip to the national DRE conference.