Community Unites in Memory of Boy Scout: Sobriety Checkpoint Promotes Road Safety

Apr 17, 2024 at 10:57 am by Chandelar Williams

Rutherford County, TN - In a heartfelt tribute to a young life lost to a tragic accident, drivers on Sam Ridley Parkway in Smyrna expressed gratitude towards law enforcement officers during a recent sobriety checkpoint. The checkpoint, held Friday night, served as a poignant reminder of the consequences of driving under the influence.
The event was dedicated to the memory of Clifton Braunwalder, a 13-year-old Boy Scout from Lascassas, who lost his life a decade ago to a drugged driver near the Sam Ridley Parkway exit on Interstate 24. Clifton, who had just finished changing a flat tire on his family's car, was struck by the impaired driver.
Smyrna Police Sgt. Andy Miller, leading the checkpoint, welcomed Clifton's family, who attended the briefing and observed the operations. Reflecting on the purpose of the checkpoint, Miller stated, "The checkpoint was a huge success in the memory of Clifton."
Clifton's father, Norbert Braunwalder, expressed appreciation for the opportunity to witness firsthand how the checkpoint operated. He emphasized the importance of using Clifton's story to raise awareness and encourage responsible decision-making behind the wheel.
A total of 474 vehicles passed through the checkpoint between Colonnade Drive and Highwood Boulevard from 10 p.m. to midnight, with officers from Smyrna, La Vergne, Bell Buckle Police Departments, the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office, and the Tennessee Highway Patrol participating.
In addition to identifying three individuals under the influence of alcohol, officers charged two individuals with drug possession, one with being a fugitive, and one with driving on a revoked license. Citations were also issued for various offenses, including driving without a license, not wearing a seat belt, underage possession of alcohol, driving without insurance, and driving with an open container of alcohol.
Sgt. Miller summed up the checkpoint's mission succinctly: "Saving lives, one stop at a time." He extended gratitude to Adam Holland of Stalker Radar for providing supper for the Braunwalder family and the dedicated law enforcement officers before the checkpoint.
The event not only served as a reminder of the devastating impact of impaired driving but also highlighted the community's commitment to honoring Clifton's memory by promoting road safety and responsible behavior.
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