Indiana Daily Student

IUPD officer patrols on Halloween

IU Police Department Officer Kyle Moulden was one of the officers to patrol campus during Halloween, one of the busiest nights of the year for the department. During his shift, Moulden did routine stops as well as transporting one man to the Monroe County Jail and an assault in Wright Residence Center.
IU Police Department Officer Kyle Moulden was one of the officers to patrol campus during Halloween, one of the busiest nights of the year for the department. During his shift, Moulden did routine stops as well as transporting one man to the Monroe County Jail and an assault in Wright Residence Center.

As IU Police Department officer Kyle Moulden began his night patrol around 11:30 p.m., young men and women in groups trudged up and down the cold, wet campus sidewalks in costume.

”I have no idea what’s in store for tonight,” Moulden said as he pulled out of the IUPD station for the night in his car, a white Dodge Charger, patrol car number 352.

Though Moulden said every night on the job is different, this particular night is one of the busiest of the year: Oct. 31. Halloween. The night is so busy that last year Monroe County ran out of ambulances while responding to calls of dangerously intoxicated students in 
residence halls.

Moulden, at 27 years old, has made a career for himself based on drunken driving arrests. Raised in Bloomington, Moulden studied criminology, psychology and sociology at IU while attending IUPD’s Police Academy and working as a part-time officer. He said Bloomington is his home.

Named the 2014 IUPD Officer of the Year and having made about 150 drunken driving arrests within the last year, Moulden works to keep his home safe. Some have speculated Moulden’s number of arrests has set a Monroe County record. With Moulden on the clock, there hasn’t been an alcohol-related accident resulting in injury in more than a year.

After making a few routine traffic stops at the start of his shift, Moulden was called in to assist with an assault in progress on the first floor of Wright Residence Center. All units, with five IUPD cruisers on shift, were dispatched to the scene.

As Moulden and other officers made their way onto the floor, nervous students paced the hallway. One stifled back tears. Her brother, from out of town, was being held at the end of the hallway. One of the seven responding IUPD officers told him to calm down.

“I’m not not calm,” the male said and continued to question the officers.

“This isn’t a Halloween costume, dude,” an officer said, cuffing his hands behind his back.

The officers separated students and took statements. Moulden interviewed the suspect, asking questions all too familiar to him as a campus police officer.

“How much have you been drinking? Vodka or beer? How many shots?” Moulden said.

Through a series of “he-said, she-said” statements, the officers determined that upon returning from a house party, the brother and sister began shoving one another, which escalated to punches.

“I never hit her first,” the man said from the end of the hall. “They’re all drunk, too.”

Determining the man shoved at least two other people, Moulden transported the underage male to the Monroe County Jail to be charged with disorderly conduct.

In the busiest hours of the night shift, Moulden drove back into campus, first stopping by Foster Residence Center, then pulling up on a car accident just before the railroad tracks on Union Street.

A white BMW, speeding around the bend on Law Lane, crashed into a cluster of trees and took out a light pole on the way.

With airbags deployed, standard protocol required an ambulance to be called, despite both men making it out of the car unscathed.

As a second officer interviewed the passenger, Moulden pulled the driver aside for a breathalyzer and field 
sobriety test.

“Follow my finger with your eyes and only your eyes,” Moulden instructed. “Don’t move your head.”

With a blood alcohol content lower than the legal limit, Moulden left the other officer to wrap up the case and wait for a wrecker to remove the misshapen car.

Returning to his cruiser, Moulden had only made it to the next stop light past the wreck at 10th and Union streets before seeing a fire truck and ambulance pull into Eigenmann Residence Center’s circle drive.

A freshman escorted emergency responders onto the seventh floor of the building as another friend across the hall sobbed.

“It happens,” an Eigenmann residence assistant told the friend. “It’s your first holiday on campus.”

The freshman student, using the Indiana Lifeline Law, called after returning from a party when his friend had passed out. As authorities made their way into the room, the male was unresponsive. Five paramedics quickly used a single white bed sheet to lift the male onto a stretcher and into the elevator.

“That’s the worst I’ve seen in a long time,” Moulden said.

As Moulden’s shift eased into the early morning hours, Moulden spotted a silver Ford Taurus clearly crossing into the left lane. Moulden immediately hit his lights, preventing the car from driving any further and potentially causing an accident.

Smelling alcohol on the driver’s breath, Moulden recognized the need for several field sobriety tests, but at the crest of a small hill, visibility of the two stopped cars was low. Moulden called for back up.

The driver, visiting from Evansville, Indiana, claimed he was trying to pick up a friend from the bars. His passenger, underage and drunk, immediately called for a taxi.

After back-up arrived, Moulden administered a preliminary breathalyzer and read the driver his Miranda rights, handcuffing and placing him in the back of the car to be transported to IUPD for a chemical breath test.

After coaching the man through five attempts of the test, Moulden took him to the Monroe County Jail for booking. His blood alcohol content registered at .145, nearly twice the legal limit.

Waiting his turn to be processed, the man sat, handcuffed and head hung low, in the jail’s sally port.

Another man, also intoxicated, sat to his right.

“I just want to go home,” he said. “I wasn’t trying to cause trouble.”

Moulden, after escorting the arrested drunken driver into the prison’s custody, returned back to the police station to catch up on paperwork. Working night shift five days a week, the Saturday evening shift is his last before taking two nights off.

“I’ve actually been on the verge of falling asleep all night,” Moulden said, yet he didn’t show it.

He chose this shift. It best suits his interests, Moulden said.

“Since I was a little kid, on some level, I knew I wanted to be a police officer,” Moulden said. “Whenever I was real little I wanted to go out and catch the bad guys, and then as I got older you know I wanted to help people and make a 
difference in the community.”

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