The Indiana State Excise Police has released its 2012 annual report, which reveals the success of a new program as well as continuing concerns about minors and alcohol.
One of the biggest successes in 2012 was the start of the Intensified College Enforcement program. Taking place on six college campuses, ICE saw a 53.4% decrease in alcohol-related crashes involving 15-20 year old drunk drivers from the year before.
"Where the success lies is in the reduced numbers of young people who are injured because of alcohol related car crashes and other things that go along with that," said Corporal Travis Thickstun, with the State Excise Police.
However concerns remain with underage drinking in Indiana. Arrests of minors for possession and consumption rose 37 percent from 2011 to 2012, and arrests made of those who provided alcohol to minors rose 46.2 percent.
Thickstun understands the numbers could seem alarming, but he credits to increase to officers sending a message that will eventually lead to a decrease.
"The goal of the ICE program is not to increase numbers of arrests but it is certainly a part of it. If it takes arresting people and issuing tickets to change behavior and to reduce alcohol crash rates among minors, reduce binge drinking rates among minors, then that's what we're going to do," said Thickstun.
For a link to the complete 2012 Indiana State Excise Police Annual Report, go to www.in.gov/isep.