A Florida police officer who was involved in a motor vehicle accident on the night of April 29 has been suspended from duty and charged with a misdemeanor count of driving under the influence of alcohol. He is also accused of causing approximately $5,000 in property damage. The 41-year-old man joined the Delray Beach Police Department in October 2008. He was released from the Palm Beach County Jail on his own recognizance about six hours after being taken into custody and is scheduled to appear in court on May 20.

The incident began when the officer's Tesla sedan allegedly struck the rear of a Ford on North Ocean Avenue near West Atlantic Avenue at approximately 10:09 p.m. The woman behind the wheel of the Ford says that she suffered minor injuries in the accident when her face struck her steering wheel. She claims that the man told her that he was an off-duty police officer but did not call 911.

The DBPD officer who arrived at the scene a short time later says that the man had bloodshot and glassy eyes, was unsteady on his feet and smelled of alcohol. He is said to have admitted to the officer that he consumed one or two drinks before getting behind the wheel. According to a DBPD report, the man refused to submit to a breath test at the scene and was taken into custody on suspicion of drunk driving after failing a field sobriety test.

This case reveals that even experienced police officers may fail to assert their Fifth Amendment rights when they find themselves on the wrong side of the law. Criminal defense attorneys might recommend remaining silent in these situations. This is because prosecutors could be less willing to reduce drunk driving penalties when motorists charged with DUI admitted to getting behind the wheel after drinking to officers at the scene.

Source: WPTV, Delray Beach police officer arrested for DUI following weekend crash, Staff report, April 29, 2019Source: The South Florida Sun-Sentinal, Off-duty Delray Beach officer refuses DUI breath test after crash, Tonya Alanez, April 29, 2019

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response