Indiana State Excise Police seized a large amount of alcohol being transported by minors in West Lafayette, Indiana last fall.
Indiana State Excise Police
(Bloomington, Ind.) - The number of minors arrested for alcohol-related offenses in Indiana is on the rise, but Corporal Travis Thickstun with the Indiana State Excise Police says that's not necessarily a bad thing.
“If it takes arresting people and issuing tickets to change behavior and reduce alcohol crash rates among minors or reduce binge drinking among minors, then that’s what we’re going to do,” said Thickstun.
According to data shown in the excise police annual report released Monday, arrests for minor possession, consumption, or transportation o alcohol were up 37 percent in 2012 when compared to 2011. Arrests for giving alcohol to minors were up 46.2 percent. The charge of using a false ID or giving a false statement of age increased 26.8 percent.
The higher number of arrests can be attributed to the Intensified College Enforcement program that aims to reduce underage drinking on university campuses across the state. While the program’s goal was to change behavior and not simply to issue tickets and make arrests, excise officers took appropriate enforcement action when they found someone violating Indiana law.
The ICE numbers speak for themselves.
“There was a 56 percent reduction in alcohol-related crashes among 15- to 20-year-olds in those communities,” Thickstun said.
In their annual report, the excise police offered one specific example of ICE’s effectiveness. During the Little 500 weekend at Indiana University in Bloomington last April, 267 patients between the ages of 17 and 23 were treated at the emergency room at IU Health Bloomington Hospital. The figure was down from 656 in the same age group seen for alcohol-related reasons during Little 500 week in 2011.
The Indiana State Excise Police 2012 Annual Report can be found at http://www.in.gov/atc/isep/files/Excise_Police_Annual_Report_2012(1).pdf.