Drug and alcohol violations increase from February 2022

Drug violation numbers saw an increase of 333.3%, going from three in February 2022 to 13 in February 2023, according to the Iowa State University monthly police report.

Both drug and alcohol violations have increased compared to February 2022 and year to date. A portion of the increase in drug violations can be connected to increased traffic stops with drugs in the vehicles.

Traffic stops increased by 19.9% from February 2022 to February 2023. The department has noticed an increase in drug violations, and much of those revolved around traffic stops with drugs or alcohol involved, or drugs being present in the vehicles, according to the report.

While OWI violations stayed relatively the same compared to February 2022, year-to-date statistics show a 65% increase.

The ISUPD has pushed harder to do better documentation compared to 2022, with cases written increasing by 14.9% compared to February 2022.

“We make sure that we’re accounting for the extra patrols and activities that we do,” said Iowa State Police Chief Michael Newton. “With the addition of our public safety officers that are non-sworn officers, they’re doing a lot more foot patrol and extra checks of buildings.”

Calls for service saw the largest increase at 62.4%. With the addition of the public safety officers who have done more foot patrol and extra checks of buildings, calls increased.

The report outlines the top 10 calls for service, comparing February 2022 to February 2023.

Extra patrol calls increased the most, going from 254 to 1,218. Traffic stop/enforcement calls also increased, going from 338 to 403.

This year, the department has emphasized getting impaired drivers off the road.

“Last year, we were very active in operating-while-intoxicated drivers, and this year started off the same way,” Newton said.

The department went through firearms training in February. They focused on honing their tactical skills. In March, the department will be doing its taser recertifications.

February 2023 summary statistics:
Assaults: 2
Sexual assaults/fondling: 0
Harassment incidents: 8
Burglary: 0
Thefts: 3
Thefts from a motor vehicle: 0
Motor vehicle theft: 0
Drug violations: 13
Alcohol violations: 9
Extortion/forgery/scam/fraud: 1
Criminal mischief/vandalism: 13
OWI: 13
Traffic and accidents: 36
Welfare check/medical assist: 7
Traffic stops: 403
New reports: 116
Calls for service: 2,708

A link to the full report can be found here.