THP Chief Disputes DUI Quota Claim

The Tennessee Highway Patrol’s top cop, Col. Tracy Trott, is denying allegations that a ticket-writing quota-system for DUI’s is in effect for troopers.

Trott told an East Tennessee newspaper recently that such claims are being made by “a small group of people that are disgruntled and may have a difference in the way we conduct our business. ”

“I can produce 600 people that would tell you there are no DUI quotas, that they like the focus and mission we do and the way that we do it, how they are treated and how they’re recognized for the work that they do,” Trott told the Johnson City Press this week.

Trott said about 30 percent of his officers had no 2014 DUI arrests.

The newspaper earlier reported that several officers, including a retired cop and a supervisor, had come forward to confirm that a quota system exists following the initial reports.

The quota accusations came to light after a Johnson City attorney filed a motion for an evidentiary hearing regarding an email about “enforcement goals” for individual officers sent by a THP officer to troopers in the Fall Branch district. At the time Trott had also disputed the quota claims.

Recently, Trott touted an increase in DUI arrests and seat belt fines being issued in 2014 as being partially responsible for the decline in traffic fatalities in 2014. According to a Dept. of Safety press release, “there was an 18.6 percent drop in alcohol-related traffic fatalities from 2013 to 2014 in Tennessee.”

“I know that our traffic enforcement efforts are making a difference in Tennessee. Those numbers are not by accident; they are by design. We’ve placed a greater emphasis on removing impaired drivers from our roadways in the last few years and the traffic fatality figures are a result of those efforts,” Trott said in the press release.

Since 2010, there has been a 149 percent increase in the number of THP DUI arrests.