The survey showed that among individuals incarcerated for violent crimes, around 40% had been drinking at the time they committed the crime. Alcohol consumption was most common in people committing certain crimes like murder and sexual assault. Alcohol affects everyone differently, but it generally lowers inhibitions for people across the board. Some drink and experience feelings of elation while others drink and get sad. There is also a group of people who drink and get violent. Unfortunately, this type of reaction to intoxication seems to be common, as 40% of those who have committed violent crimes were drinking and there are a lot of individuals – incarcerated or not – who have committed violent crimes.
Analysis of the survey showed that being under the influence of alcohol didn’t just make people more likely to be the perpetrator in a crime; it also made them more likely to be a victim. Almost 40% of homicide victims had alcohol in their system at the time they were murdered.
Many believe that alcohol is present in more victims and perpetrators because it is more widely available. That is true, alcohol is legal and can be bought legitimately in a wide variety of locations. However, the people who committed these violent crimes typically didn’t just have a beer with dinner. The study showed that among these perpetrators, the average blood alcohol content was more than three times the legal limit.
Alcohol intoxication isn’t just dangerous behind the wheel. Many people, with or without an alcohol addiction, go out drinking with good intentions. They want to go out and have a good time or relax. However, as the survey showed, the road to jail is paved with good intentions.
Good intentions also keep alcoholics in denial and may delay their path to alcoholism treatment. No matter how many times the alcoholic’s binge with good intentions – believing they’ll just go out and have a good time – they keep having the same ending which includes but is not limited to being violent, blacking out, promiscuity, fighting or becoming a victim.