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Who Shoulders the Burden of Proof, the Citizen or the State? – The Injustice of Arrest Incentives

It’s disheartening to read about arrest quotas or incentives even if they are legal. But when incentives are based around making specific arrests like DUI, which rely on degrees of subjectivity to provide probable cause and can result in fines, license suspensions, and myriad attorneys fees and insurance hikes, there is even more cause for concern. The Director of Public Safety of Folly Beach, South Carolina told officers of the local police department that whoever made the most DUI arrests from now until September 1st would receive an unmarked Crown Victoria. It was unclear as to if the Crown Victoria was to be used personally or professionally, and within what bounds if any, but creating an incentive for making arrests without regard to corresponding convictions is an injustice. In such a system citizens are burdened, usually monetarily, with proving their innocence, while police are rewarded for questioning it. In a perfect world, police would seek out crime without the extra incentive. Then again, in a perfect world, there would be no crime.

-Author: George Creal

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