A Safford police officer on patrol last Sunday morning at approximately 2:00 a.m., clocked a vehicle exceeding the speed limit of 25 MPH on 8th Avenue near 10th Street. The officer clocked the vehicle at 35-36 MPH. The officer followed the vehicle and activated his emergency lights . The vehicle continued driving a few more blocks and turning onto Relation Street before stopping.
The officer approached the driver window and made contact with the male driver and a female passenger. The officer asked the driver if he knew why the officer stopped him and the driver said, ‘no.’ The officer said that the posted speed limit was 25 and asked how fast the driver thought he was going. He said, “probably about 35.”
While speaking to the driver, the officer noticed a strong odor of alcohol coming from the vehicle. He asked the driver for his license, registration and insurance. While the driver was looking for the paperwork, the officer asked how much he had been drinking that night. The man said that he had not been drinking very much. The officer asked him to rate his level of intoxication on a scale of 0 – 10 and the man rated himself at a two. The driver reportedly slurred his speech while talking with the officer. The officer asked how much the man had had to drink and the man said that he had about 3 to 4 beers with the last one being about 20 minutes prior.
The man found his driver’s license with some difficulty and the officer asked him to perform some field sobriety tests. Based on his admission of drinking and performing poorly on the field sobriety tests, the man was placed under arrest. After running the man’s driver’s license, the officer learned that he was supposed to have an ignition interlock device to prevent him from driving while intoxicated. The vehicle the man was driving did not have an interlock.
The female passenger had been drinking as well, so the officer asked her to call someone to get her and the vehicle. The driver was transported to the police department where he submitted to a blood draw before being released from custody.