Friday, April 10, 2020

Number of drunk driving incidents on the rise at MSU

October 5, 2016
<p>Michigan State University Police Department on Aug. 29, 2015. Courtney Kendler/The State News</p>

Michigan State University Police Department on Aug. 29, 2015. Courtney Kendler/The State News

Photo by Courtney Kendler | The State News

MSU police Capt. Doug Monette said 96 drunk driving cases occurred on campus in 2016, already an increase from 78 in 2015.

In 2014, there were 98 occurred cases and in 2013, there were 158.

“Drinking is a way for some people to be have fun, and a lot of young people tend to think that they can push limits and think that they can drink and drive and still be alright because they’ve done it in the past and they were OK, but somewhere down the line you make a mistake and bad things happen,” said Deon Howard, technical aide at MSUE director's office and a former employee at The State News.

Drunk driving is the radar for local law enforcement.

“Obviously drunk driving is a priority for our department,” East Lansing police Lt. Steve Gonzalez said. “I’ve been here for over twenty years and they’ve always taken a hard stand on drunk driving ... and I don’t ever see that changing.”

Gonzalez said that ELPD receives a grant funded program from the state of Michigan to combat drunk driving. The grant allows the department to bring officers in to prevent drunk driving.

MSU police has similar methods to enforce drunk driving punishments.

"We take alcohol enforcement very seriously. Whether it is drunk driving or a minor in possession," said MSUPD CPT Doug Monette. "We have a road patrol division that enforces all violations like drunk driving."

Similar to ELPD, Monette said MSUPD also has a grant program officers sign up for to help enforce drunk driving prevention while also enforcing other traffic violations such as a seatbelt violation. 

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