Richard J LundmanEric Callison
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Richard J. Lundman, Eric Callison
City Police and Drunk Driving, Justice 110
Justice Quarterly, 2-12-99
Vol. #10 / Issue #3
Pub. 94 Pgs 526-546
Summary of Article
This article mainly consisted of what city police go through every day, especially
when it comes to pulling over drunk drivers. The journal mostly focused on mid-west
police work. Three of the most popular social movement organizations are MADD which
stands for mothers against drunk driving, SADD, students against drunk driving, and RID,
removing intoxicated drivers. These three organizations are mainly fighting for
strengthening the laws reflecting drunk drivers.
This journal also focuses on examining police behavior during the years when
driving under the influence was a less serious issue than today. The author, Richard
Lundman sent 7 observers in different police cars to study and record the different
behaviors of drunk drivers. They observed a total of 365 eight hour shift which involved
2,000 encounters with law offenders. Out of that 2,000 one hundred people were driving
under the influence. The drunk drivers were mainly what they focused on. The observers
used codes to verify race, gender, age, social class, and politeness as well as impoliteness.
The results were not surprising, out of the 100 people pulled over 77 were let go and 23
were arrested. 85 puled over adequately, and 5 resulted in a chase. 85 did not get in an
accident, but 10 did. 37 were moderately intoxicated and 63 were highly intoxicated. 89
were male and 11 were female.
In every part of the world someone will always be different from the rest. Another
study shows the most frequent targets among the Midwest. The most targeted kind of
people are hippies. It seems the long hair and the different style of dress was an easy target
for drug bust and intoxication. Some more highly targeted people are African Americans,
public drunks, drug users, poor people, black and white couples, Native Americans, and
Mid west police did not always arrest a drunk driver, actually the probabilities of
being let go while driving under the influence are pretty good. Often a drunk driver is
passed up because he or she looks like to much trouble to handle. Another reason for
letting a drunk driver go is the fact that the average time to make an arrest is 3 hours.
Most the time when a person is arrested he or she causes trouble on the way to the station.
A lot of times the arrested intoxicants smell of alcohol so bad the police officer gets sick
and sometimes has to stop and get out of the car for some fresh air. After the victim is in
jail the car can smell of alcohol for days. Sometimes people urinate or vomit in the back.
This is obviously irritating and is a mess to clean up as well. So when a policeman pulls
over a drunk driver he normally call a cab or a family member to come pick them up. This
saves hours of paperwork, cleaning, and often times sickness.
This article stood out from all of the other topics for the reason of interest. Driving
under the influence is not an easy task. The statistics in the article were very helpful for a
mental picture of how many people are pulled over each day for driving under the
influence. Driving drunk was of nobodies interest 40 years ago, since then the rules have
changed so much it is totally not worth it. I think police put up with more than they half
to. Being a cop in the mid west is a hard task. They never know what to expect. Some
police officers can push their authority to the limits though, some cops feel like they are
more powerful than everyday Joeís like ourselves. I agree with the percentages of letting
people go when pulled over drunk. If the person is polite and does everything the police
officer asks, then I donít see any reason for any further arrest unless it was just a first
There are some things I like about this article and other things I didnít. I do like
the fact that the author used first person, he was involved in all data taking, which makes
the article and statistics more believable. I did not like the fact that the author split the
article in half between city police and drunk driving. I felt not enough information was
presented on the actual drunk driving. overall the author had very good points and
presented the information well. The author did not seem
View Full Essay
Driving under the influence, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, Drunk driving in the United States, Drunk drivers, Impaired driving in Canada, Public intoxication, Base rate fallacy, Driving while black
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