JESSUP, Md. - Trooper First Class Anthony Wallace is the man impaired drivers may not realize they are grateful to see until they sober up and realize an DUI arrest may have saved their lives.
That reality is what Wallace says has motivated him to break a state record for the most DUI arrests, clocking his 100th this past weekend.
Wallace is part of the state's seven-member State Police Impaired Driving Reduction Effort or SPIDRE. The team has existed since 2013 and racked up 2,500 DUI arrests since then.
Wallace says his motivation for identifying DUI drivers is seeing the grief caused by drunk driving crashes firsthand and interacting with families torn apart by the death of a loved one.
"For the rest of their life, they are going to have to live with this. That is what kind of drives me," said Wallace.
He drives with pictures of victims killed in drunk driving crashes above his dashboard.
He says one reaction to an arrest he made sticks out in his mind. The woman thanks him with a Christmas card each year.
"She thanks me every single Christmas because I was able to give her something, kind of open her eyes and make her change the way she was living and the way she was operating on a daily basis with the impairment, and she has been clean and sober since,” he said. “I just got the Christmas card this year. She has been clean and sober since December 2014.”