Indiana State Excise Police officers arrested 235 people on 285 charges during Indiana University's Little 500 events in Bloomington this weekend.
That's up 29 from last year, when excise officers issued 256 tickets – a record at the time. In 2011, they issued 167 tickets. In 2010, officers issued 158. They issued 157 in 2009, 202 in 2008 and 103 in 2007. This year, they also issued 25 warning tickets.
As in the last several years, the majority of tickets were for alcohol offenses, particularly illegal possession or consumption of alcoholic beverages. Officers also made arrests for possession of ecstasy, operating while intoxicated, theft, criminal conversion, criminal trespass, possession of marijuana, possession of paraphernalia, resisting law enforcement, false informing, indecent exposure, furnishing alcoholic beverages to a minor, open container violation and public intoxication.
While the number of people cited this weekend was a record high for State Excise Police officers during a Little 500 weekend, there was a notable reduction in the number of dangerously high blood alcohol concentration levels over previous years. Only one person was taken to I.U. Health Bloomington Hospital for medical evaluation for a high blood alcohol concentration. He tested .29% BAC after he opened the door of an unmarked police SUV that was stopped at a traffic light at College and Kirkwood and got in the backseat. He said he thought it was a taxi cab. After medical evaluation, he was taken to Monroe County Jail.
As in the last few years, roughly half of those cited were not Indiana University students. Instead, they were from other colleges and universities around Indiana and other states visiting Bloomington.
"Excise officers again focused their attention on Bloomington this weekend, when alcohol violations are historically high as a result of Indiana University's Little 500," Superintendent Matt Strittmatter said. "Their primary aim this weekend was to keep students, residents and visitors to Bloomington safe by enforcing Indiana law."
Those cited by excise officers this weekend appeared in Monroe Circuit Court Sunday morning at 8:30. Most of them are spending today in alcohol awareness class and doing community service.
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