DATE Celebrates the Launch of the State’s First Impaired Driving Simulator Program

Secretary Nathaniel McQueen Jr., DATE Director John Yeomans, Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Communications
Manager Denée Crumrine, Lt. Governor Bethany Hall-Long

DOVER, DE – The Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement (DATE) was joined by Lt. Governor Bethany Hall-Long, Safety and Homeland Security Secretary Nathaniel McQueen Jr. representatives from the Office of Highway Safety (OHS) and Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield to celebrate the launch of the State’s first Impaired Driving Simulator Program.

“It is critical that every driver on the road understands the repercussions of driving while under the influence,” said Lt. Governor Bethany Hall-Long. “Deaths and injuries due to driving under the influence are preventable. Innovative solutions like this can help to reduce the number of accidents and save lives. I thank all of the state partners for their leadership and the support of Highmark DE in launching the DUI Driving simulator. Partnerships like this help make our state stronger and healthier.”

The simulator program, made possible through a partnership with the Office of Highway Safety and Highmark Delaware, will allow drivers to experience what can happen when they operate a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or while distracted with a cell phone. Vision, braking, and steering are impacted by the various levels of impairment and demonstrate the dangers in a virtual training scenario.

“Impaired driving remains prevalent on our roadways. Much like aggressive driving or other dangerous behaviors, impaired driving is entirely preventable,” said Secretary McQueen. “Many thanks to DATE, OHS, and the support of Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield for devoting their time and dedication to this project. Projects like this are critical for our efforts to reduce the incidence of impaired and distracted driving throughout our state.”

With 3,972 DUI arrests and 1,050 DUI related crashes occurring in our State last year, DATE and OHS will join forces to deploy the simulator at schools and community events statewide to educate the public and create an awareness around the dangers of impaired driving.

“Our Division is pleased to present this state-of-the-art Impaired Distracted Driver Simulator. From its inception, this project has been supported by our partners at Highmark Delaware, Delaware Office of Highway Safety and the Office of the Secretary of Safety and Homeland Security,” DATE Director John Yeomans said. “This is an extremely valuable tool in our continued efforts to educate our citizens and especially our young drivers regarding impaired driving.”

“Driving under the influence is the result of poor decision-making, and has tragic consequences,” OHS Director Kimberly Chesser said. “The DUI Simulator offers an opportunity for people to experience various driving conditions, hazards and scenarios as if they were under the influence while safely using a simulation program. The simulation mimics the difficulties drivers will encounter at various blood alcohol content levels. By incorporating the DUI simulator into our safety programs, we are educating the community about the consequences of impaired driving and reinforcing our drive sober message.”

DATE was awarded a $140,000 grant from Highmark Delaware to help purchase the driving simulator.

“Highmark Delaware’s BluePrints for the Community is pleased to support the purchase of an impaired driving simulator for the Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement as they partner with schools and community-based organizations throughout the state to combat impaired driving. By providing real-life scenarios in a safe and controlled environment, good driving practices can be instilled in our young drivers,” Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield President Nick Moriello said.

Media Contact:
Arshon Howard
Chief of Community Relations
Cell: (302) 922-0186


Delaware Office Of Highway Safety Activates July 4th Statewide DUI Checkpoints + Soberlift Program At The Beaches

 The Delaware Office of Highway Safety (OHS) is once again implementing a multi-tiered strategy to encourage responsible driving behaviors and, ultimately, create safer roadways throughout Delaware during the Fourth of July holiday. The OHS SoberLift program, presented in partnership with Lyft®, will be activated in Lewes, Rehoboth Beach, Dewey Beach, Bethany Beach, South Bethany Beach, Fenwick Island, and Ocean View nightly from 7:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. beginning Thursday, July 1 and continuing through Monday, July 5, ending at 2:00 a.m.

A key component of the campaign is the opportunity for individuals to receive free Lyft® vouchers* enabling them to “ride sober.” A discount code for a maximum $15 Lyft® value can be redeemed by texting “SOBERLIFT” to 99000. The Lyft® opportunity works hand in hand with a robust communications campaign throughout the Delaware beaches over the holiday weekend, and DUI checkpoints implemented by state and local law enforcement statewide (see below for dates and locations).

“The Fourth of July is about coming together and celebrating what unites us. Sadly, it is also an all-too-often deadly time on Delaware roads.  Before you head out for your celebrations, remember to plan ahead and arrange for a sober ride home,” Kimberly Chesser, Director, Delaware Office of Highway Safety.  “Deaths and serious injuries caused by impaired driving are preventable, and too many lives are tragically cut short in traffic crashes involving alcohol- and drug-impaired driving.”

Throughout the July Fourth SoberLift initiative, OHS will engage in a steady stream of messaging that encourages drivers and passengers to understand the risks and potential consequences of driving while impaired and to plan for a sober ride before the celebration begins. To achieve its goals, OHS will be communicating with the community through print and digital advertising; social media; table tents, posters, and sandwich boards in public areas, restaurants, and retailers throughout Delaware beach towns, in addition to public relations efforts. OHS encourages drivers to use its recently launched Arrive Alive DE Impaired Driving Simulator — available at—a first-of-its-kind augmented reality tool to help website visitors see the potential effects of impairment on driving. The “drive sober” website page also houses the new BAC Calculator tool to help website visitors understand the different levels of blood alcohol concentration (BAC) which refers to the percentage of alcohol in a person’s bloodstream. In Delaware, a person is legally intoxicated if they have a BAC of 0.08% or higher.

Additional support will come from community partners helping to distribute educational materials and influence the unique community they serve. Most notably, the State of Delaware Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement will be distributing SoberLift materials to bars and restaurants in beach communities as well as engaging staff and other groups in discussion of ways they can impact positive behavior by, for example, adhering to over-pouring regulations.

The SoberLift program allows the Delaware Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement the opportunity to work with our partners at Delaware Office of Highway Safety in promoting positive behavior by beach area bars and restaurants and helping to ensure our citizens and Delaware roadways are safer during the holiday weekend,” Chief John A. Yeomans, Delaware Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement.

Sponsors of this SoberLift program include Breakthru Beverage DE, Captain Morgan, Two Stones, Grain Craft Bar + Kitchen, First State Brew Bus, Washington Street Ale House/Oyster House, Dewey Business Partnership, Bluecoast Seafood, and Grill Rehoboth, The Starboard, Liquid Alchemy Brewing, and Aloysius Butler & Clark (AB&C).

“Since 2018, over 1,200 people across Delaware have used OHS’s SoberLift program during Fourth of July, and other periods prone to higher incidence rates for DUI arrests and crashes rather than possibly drive home impaired. The campaign is a success due to these people making the responsible decision to make a plan for a sober ride home before the celebrating begins,” Cynthia Cavett, Marketing Specialist II & Public Information Officer, Delaware Office of Highway Safety.

July 4th DUI Checkpoints Activated Statewide

Three sobriety checkpoints are scheduled for the upcoming holiday weekend beginning Friday, July 2 at 10 p.m. and continuing into Saturday, July 3 at 2 a.m. The checkpoints are part of a weekend-long mobilization educating Delawareans to secure a sober ride home before starting their celebration festivities.

The following are the scheduled checkpoint locations for the holiday weekend:

  • New Castle County – Route 72 near Newark
  • Kent County – U.S. 13 near Dover
  • Sussex County – State Route 24 near Millsboro

The Independence Day holiday DUI checkpoint activation will include sixty-six law enforcement officers from fifteen local, county, and municipal police agencies in addition to Delaware State Police. At least one Drug Recognition Enforcement (DRE) officer will be part of the checkpoint activation in each county. The checkpoint locations are in targeted areas known to have a high number of DUI arrests and crashes including both injuries and fatalities.

OHS reminds drivers and passengers that in addition to alcohol and illegal drugs, medications prescribed by a healthcare provider and even some over-the-counter drugs can impair driving and may carry severe penalties.

Impaired Driving Statistics for Delaware

Over the period of 5 years from 2016-2020, drivers between the ages of 35 to 44 have shown the highest numbers of DUI crashes, with drivers 20 to 29 trailing behind. In the age-gender groups, it seems that age 20-29 and 35-44 males are the biggest contributors to this trend. Saturday typically has the highest number of DUI-related crashes, followed closely by Sunday for the 5-year average. The times where DUI-related crashes occur the most are:

  • Friday 9 p.m. – 12 a.m.
  • Saturday 9 p.m. – 12 a.m.
  • Sunday 12 a.m. – 3 a.m.
  • Saturday 12 a.m. – 3 a.m.

Over the July Fourth holiday weekend in 2020 (July 2 – 5, 2020):

  • 52 DUI arrests were made over the holiday period (July 2 – 5, 2020)
  • 24 DUI-related crashes resulted in:
    • 13 injuries
    • 4 fatalities

For more information, visit

*The number of daily SoberLift codes available will be limited.

Media Contact:

AB&C, Jenn Buchman,

DOHS, Cynthia Cavett,

DATE, Jason Atallian,

delaware office of highway safety logoAbout the Delaware Office of Highway Safety
The Office of Highway Safety (OHS) is committed to improving the safety of Delaware’s motoring public by focusing on behavioral traffic safety issues, such as impaired driving, seat belt use, speeding, child passenger safety, pedestrian and bicycle safety, motorcycle safety, and teen driving issues. Follow the Delaware Office of Highway Safety on ArriveAliveDE.comFacebookTwitterInstagram, and Snapchat.

DSP Lt. Col. Melissa A. Zebley Named Superintendent Of Delaware State Police



P.O. BOX 818

DOVER, DELAWARE 19903-0818


Date: July 9, 2020

Contact: DSHS Wendy Hudson – (302) 382-7978

DSP MCpl. Melissa Jaffe – (302) 382-2136



Today Governor John Carney joined Kimberly Chandler, Acting Secretary of Safety and Homeland Security, to announce the appointment of Lt. Col. Melissa A. Zebley as Superintendent of the Delaware State Police.

Lt. Col. Zebley, 50, assumes command of the State Police following the retirement of Col. Nathaniel McQueen Jr. Lt. Col. Zebley, a 28-year veteran of the State Police, is currently responsible for Internal Affairs, Information Support Services and Planning. She joined the Executive Staff in 2010 at the rank of Major with oversight of the Budget, Training Academy and Human Resource sections. In 2013, she transitioned to the role of Operations Officer overseeing New Castle County Patrol Troops and Criminal Investigations, as well as the statewide Traffic Section. Her former assignments include patrol Trooper, Training Academy Officer, Patrol Sergeant, Public Information Officer, Fiscal Executive Officer, and Troop Commander.

Lt. Colonel Zebley has also served as the Officer in Charge of the Honor Guard and as a member of the Division’s Critical Incident Stress Management Team.

“Lt. Col. Zebley has a tremendous track record of leadership at the Delaware State Police, and is the right person to lead our largest police agency” said Governor Carney. “A 28-year veteran of the State Police, Lt. Col. Zebley has the trust of community leaders not only in New Castle County, but up and down our state. I know she will build on the good work of Colonel McQueen to keep Delaware safe and continue to establish trust between law enforcement and the communities they serve. Thank you to Lt. Col. Zebley for taking on this important challenge.”

“Having served in almost every leadership position within the Delaware State Police, Lt. Col. Zebley not only possesses the qualifications, skills and experience to lead the State’s largest police agency but has also earned the respect of her fellow troopers and the Delaware law enforcement community. She has demonstrated the temperament, demeanor, and wisdom necessary to navigate the challenges in policing today and is committed to serving the citizens of our State, said Acting Secretary Chandler.

“I am humbled and honored to serve as the 26th Superintendent of the Delaware State Police. I thank Governor Carney and Acting Secretary Chandler for their faith in me to lead this division of professional and dedicated members. I pledge to serve with the dignity and honor befitting the high standards of the agency,” Lt. Col. Zebley said. “The Delaware State Police remain steadfast in our mission of service to all citizens and will continue on our course of community collaboration and progressive policing.”

Lt. Col. Zebley earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Delaware and a Master of Science degree in the Administration of Justice from Wilmington University. She is also a graduate of the Northwestern University School of Police Staff and Command and a graduate of the 235th Session of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) National Academy. In addition, she is a graduate of the Anti-Defamation League’s Advanced Training School course on Extremist and Terrorist Threats and is currently attending the 43rd Session of the FBI’s National Executive Institute.

Lt. Col. Zebley is an instructor for the Delaware Leadership Development Program, a three-week school targeted for first line supervisors. Since 2003, she has served as an adjunct faculty member at Wilmington University, teaching in the undergraduate and graduate Criminal Justice Programs.

Lt. Col. Zebley is a member of the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the National Association of Women Law Enforcement Executives, Mid-Atlantic Association of Women in Law Enforcement, and the FBI National Academy Associates. She was the 2015 Chapter President of the FBINAA Maryland/Delaware Chapter. She is currently the Chair of the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators (AAMVA) Law Enforcement Standing Committee.


Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement to Co-Host 2016 NLLEA Training Symposium in Dover

DATE LogoThe 2016 National Liquor Law Enforcement Association (NLLEA) Training Symposium, co-hosted by the Delaware Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement (DATE), will be held from April 18 – 22 in Dover, Delaware. Registration is open to all Delaware and out of state law enforcement agencies.

This annual, week-long symposium provides core courses focused on the fundamental foundation areas of alcohol law enforcement and sessions that explore the changing challenges and demands faced by law enforcement agencies. The symposium courses improve the specialized knowledge and professional skills of law enforcement officers, whether new to the field or seasoned professionals. Some of the topic highlights include: Warrantless Administrative Search Authority, The 3-Tier System and Illegal Trade Practices, Underage Drinking Enforcement, Illegal Gambling, Special Events Enforcement, Fraudulent Documents, Social Networking/Cyber-Space Investigations, Undercover Operations & Techniques and more.

The symposium will be held at the Dover Downs Hotel. The hotel is centrally-located in the heart of the Mid-Atlantic region, with a variety of restaurants and activities on site. The symposium fee is $400 per member and $500 per non-member attendee, which includes all training materials and lunch.

For more information about the upcoming 2016 NLLEA Training Symposium and to complete your registration, please visit To make room reservations or for any questions about the NLLEA Symposium please contact NLLEA Training Coordinator, Lara Morford, by email at or by calling 301-755-2795.

The National Liquor Law Enforcement Association is a non-profit association of law enforcement personnel dedicated to the enforcement of liquor laws and regulations. The NLLEA has a membership structure that is open to all levels of persons involved in enforcing liquor laws in the United States and Canada.

The Delaware Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement is tasked with protecting the health, safety and welfare of people in Delaware through the enforcement of state liquor and youth access to tobacco laws, while maintaining the highest state of preparedness for responding to threats against homeland security. ATE Agents are certified police officers in the State of Delaware with statewide jurisdiction and arrest powers. ATE Agents have full authority to enforce all of the laws of the state, including liquor, drug, criminal, and traffic statutes.NLLEA Logo


Media Contact:
John Yeomans, Director
(302) 741-2719

Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement to Host Citizens Police Academy

CPA Logo

The Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement is currently accepting applications for the 2016 Citizen’s Police Academy. The 8-week program will begin on Wednesday, January 20, 2016 and will meet every Wednesday from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement located at 34 Starlifter Avenue, Dover, DE. The Citizens Police Academy will conclude with a graduation ceremony and reception on Wednesday, March 9, 2016.

Completed applications and a copy of a valid state identification and/or driver’s license must be received at the Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement no later than Monday, January 4, 2016 at 4:30 P.M.

Applications can be downloaded from the web by visiting, or requested by contacting Cindi Wood, Community Outreach Coordinator, at (302) 741-2715 or email

The Citizen’s Police Academy provides a direct overview of both law enforcement and community-related functions of the Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement. Topics of instruction include but are not limited to:

• Tobacco Enforcement & Diversion
• Fake ID’s
• Cooperating Underage Witness Program
• Responsible Server Training
• Special Tactics and Response Team
• Division of Gaming Enforcement
• Cooperating Underage Witness Program
• Delaware Violent Crime Reduction Task Force
• Fatal Vision Impairment Demonstration
• Community Partnerships

All instructors for the academy are highly-trained and experienced police officers or professionals in their respective fields. In addition to in-depth presentations and demonstrations over the 8-week period, class members will be given the opportunity to attend a firearms demonstration at the Delaware State Police Firing Range. Members will receive instruction on proper weapon handling, weapons safety, and be allowed to fire department issued weapons.

Applicants must be a Delaware resident and 18 years of age or older. A criminal history background check will be performed on all applicants. The Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement reserves the right to deny or remove applicants for past or current activities that may be detrimental to the program and its attendees.

There is no fee for the program; however, the Division requests that applicants be committed to the full eight-week program. Applicants will attend classes on the following dates: January 20, January 27, February 3, February 10, February 17, February 24, March 2 and March 9.

The class size is limited to 20 students. Due to the high demand for this course, applicants are encouraged to apply immediately. Accepted recruits will be contacted during the week of January 11, 2016.

Any questions should be directed to the Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement at (302) 741-2721.