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State Seat Belt Laws To Change On Sunday

Last updated on Thursday, June 28, 2007

(INDIANAPOLIS) - Wednesday was the last official seatbelt enforcement day for police departments in Marion County.

On Sunday, Indiana's seat belt laws change to include nearly all vehicles, while banning the use of seat belt enforcement zones.

Indy Metro Police Sergeant George Martin says the elimination of checkpoints does not mean officers won't enforce the law. He says instead of multi-agency efforts with marked lanes at specific times, police departments may establish enforcement periods without public warning.

Seat belt enforcement campaigns have been financially supported by agencies such as the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute and the Governor's Council for Impaired and Dangerous Driving.

Martin says departments may continue to use the grants to pay officers willing to work for overtime pay. He contends the seat belt zones have been effective not only in raising awareness of the law, but as a crime prevention tool.

He says the checkpoints have nabbed impaired drivers, drivers with suspended licenses, and others wanted on warrants.

Last week, a man turned himself in at a seat belt zone, claiming he had robbed a business two days prior.

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