DUI arrests dip locally, but still concern officialsDriving under the influence arrests in Jamestown took a slight dip in 2011 but the numbers are still a concern, said Scott Edinger, Jamestown police chief. Last year there were 133 total DUI arrests, in 2010 there were 140 and in 2009 there were 103, according to the annual report from the Jamestown Police Department.
By: Ben Rodgers, The Jamestown Sun
Driving under the influence arrests in Jamestown took a slight dip in 2011 but the numbers are still a concern, said Scott Edinger, Jamestown police chief.
Last year there were 133 total DUI arrests, in 2010 there were 140 and in 2009 there were 103, according to the annual report from the Jamestown Police Department.
Edinger said numbers have been up across the state, especially in the Oil Patch. There’s also been a state-wide effort to curb those numbers through more education and more enforcement.
“You would hope that enforcement and education would help bring those numbers down,” he said.
The North Dakota Department of Transportation has been active in educating the public about saturation patrols, when law enforcement officials work together and conduct checkpoints.
“It’s not for a lack of attempted education on the part of the state of North Dakota, the DOT and the local enforcement agencies,” Edinger said. “We do some very aggressive enforcement.”
Of the 133 total DUI arrests in Jamestown in 2011, 105 were males and 28 were females. There was one juvenile male as well.
In 2011 males between the ages of 25-29 made up the largest group of DUI arrests with 27.
Much like drug-related arrests, many DUI arrests in 2011 happened on routine traffic stops for a number of infractions.
In 2011 there were 1,802 traffic citations issued, up from 1,758 in 2011 and 1,718 in 2009.
“We truly have some officers that are truly focused on traffic enforcement and that’s where some of these numbers come from,” Edinger said.
Speeding tickets dropped to 191 last year, from 260 in 2010 and 303 citations issued in 2009.
However, parking tickets issued increased by almost 200, numbering 896 last year, up from 701 in 2010 and 406 in 2009. Last year those tickets amounted to $14,505 in fines turned over to the city.
Edinger had no reason for the increase in parking tickets as he said parking enforcement is not something he is directly involved with. Parking enforcement is handled by particular shifts and shift supervisors for the department.
There was no comparable data available in the report on years other than 2011 for accident stats, but most accidents occur in January.
Edinger said the lack of any significant snow this year will likely lead to fewer accidents.
“If we have snow and then the streets dry up and we don’t have snow for a stretch, people get unaccustomed to driving on those roads very quickly,” he said.
Sun reporter Ben Rodgers can be reached at 701-952-8455 or by email at email@example.com