The Alliance Against Intoxicated Motorists (AAIM) has released the results of its 2011 survey of police departments across the state concerning DUI. The non-profit advocacy group takes a survey each year of all police departments and uses the information to compile statistics about arrests by each department, county, etc.
The police departments’ participation in the survey is voluntary. They are not required to submit their information by any law.
While the Secretary of State is the one government agency that could most accurately report DUI information, they do not disclose specific facts. And so, in the absence of another source of information, the AAIM survey is a good reference about the frequency of arrests for driving under the influence.
The 2011 survey shows the following cities have the highest number of arrests for the year:
- Rock Island–465
- Carol Stream–349
The State Police made 9,719 arrests in 2011 while the Chicago Police Department arrested 3,037 people.
The Cook County Sheriff made 475 arrests, the most among any county, while Lake County deputies made 368.
The numbers are influenced by many factors including geography, number of officers, and their job duties. State troopers, for example, concentrate on the highways and so it is no surprise that their DUI arrest count is higher than any other department. The Chicago police, however, have other concerns such as gang activity, so they have fewer DUI arrests.
Download the AAIM report.
By traditions, the statistics will be followed by politicians beating their war drums about stopping drunk driving. But the numbers say nothing about how many innocent people were arrested for DUI, or how many will win an acquittal in court.
These cases can be defended and should be taken seriously.