I’d like to thank PSO Todd Borowski for tipping me off to this interesting series of news articles from M-Live from a few weeks ago. It is a comparison of police agencies on their drunk driving records. I’m happy to point out that Auburn Hills is one of the Top 10 agencies for the number of arrests per officer in 2011. The not so good part is that we were down 30% from 2006-2011. I can tell you what that was about–our staffing decreased by about 10 positions over that same time period.
We are now increasing again with 3 new officers this year and a part time IT intern. I know you are wondering what a part time IT intern could have to do with drunk driving arrests. In fact, we have certain duties related to our technology (in car computers, mobile video) that must be done. In the past we have always had very few non sworn staff members. Since the work had to be done, we used higher paid police officers to do those duties which took away from available patrol hours.
Another contributor to the decline could be public awareness of the increased penalties for drinking and driving. We are seeing an increase in drugged driving which wasn’t very detectable in earlier years. If you run us through the database you’ll see that we have a fairly high number of .00 blood alcohol cases which says to me that they were tested for alcohol and when that was disproved, we investigated them for drugged driving and made cases on that (we found the explanation for the bad driving that brought them to our attention) because we have trained our officers in specialized detection techniques. We had the first 2 Drug Recognition Experts in the state.
The good news is that our arrests are on the rise again. I just looked at our September monthly report which indicated that our arrests are up 25% for the month. It is a positive sign that we are back on track to assuring that our streets are safe.
Take a look at the article: