Motorists today are alerting more potential DUI violators to police than ever before. The Chicago Tribune reported Wednesday that motorists are using their cell phones to alert police of other drivers who appear to be dangerous or impaired. Police dispatchers reportedly said that they welcome the outside help and encourage people to identify potential impaired drivers, so long as they themselves are not violating any laws in doing so.
The Chicago Tribune also reported that there are now safety groups willing to do more than just encourage people to call in; some are actually offering cash rewards. The Schaumburg-based Alliance Against Intoxicated Motorists (AAIM) reportedly started a program called Drunkbusters that offers callers $100 for any tip that directly leads to a DUI arrest. From 1990-2010, the Drunkbusters program has reportedly given out around $445,000 and led to more than 4,450 DUI arrests.
The Chicago Tribune said that callers are asked to provide a car description (make, model, color), location, and direction of the driver that the caller wishes to report. They are also asked for a license plate number, a description of the driver and the number of passengers present in the car if the caller can safely attain the information.
Of course, the Tribune did not report how many of these citizen reports turn out to be false….Additionally, anonymous reports of DUI can be challenged in court as a potentially unlawful basis for stopping cars.