- Published: November 6, 2012
Knowing that most of alcohol is not legislated against here in the United States, I thought it would be interesting to research a little bit about the relation between alcoholism and crime. Are there any tangible, statistically significant connections between these two categories? One of the first examples that might come into our minds is the thought of drunk drivers, as Seliger et al. does specifically quote drinking drivers as “…one of the worst criminal killers of today.”
Some of the most common myths or arbitrary connections that people use to associate alcohol and criminal acts include the following: people might use alcohol to depress the inhibition to gain courage to commit the crime; and crime is more common in areas where alcohol is sold. So what’s the actual reality with these issues?
According to the report by Policing and Reducing Crime Unit (PRCU) of UK, alcohol can serve as a disinhibitor, potentially causing aggression. The most common results of alcohol-related aggressive crimes include facial injuries, whether from punches or with beer bottles and glasses. Not so surprisingly, most of the ones involved in these situations are men.
So what can the legal system do about these occurrences? There are multiple directions that can help improve the situation. One of them is not only enforcing legislation, but emphasizing the role of education in creating more awareness, whether as a preventive method, or as rehabilitative treatment.
. Seliger, RV (1953). Alcohol and Crime. Northwestern Law. Vol. 44, pp. 438-441.
. Pease, Ken (1999). Policing and Reducing Crime Unit: Crime Reduction Research Series. Research, Development, and Statistics Directorate. Pages 1-45.