In a pair of unrelated recent incidents, two police officers crashed patrol cars while driving under the influence. One occurred in Florida where an off-duty officer struck an unoccupied vehicle. In the second incident, an off-duty officer rammed into the back of other motorists before fleeing the scene. Both were arrested shortly thereafter.
In the first incident, Miami-Dade officer Leopold Lewis, 42 drove his police car into a parked car while off-duty and drunk. Lewis left the scene before he was arrested and now faces charges of leaving the scene of a crash, drunken driving, and DUI with property damage.
“This officer placed the public in danger in the same vehicle that the community has entrusted as a symbol of protection,” MDPD Director Alfredo Ramirez said in a statement to Local 10 News. “I will not tolerate any representative of the Miami-Dade Police Department to jeopardize the community’s trust.
Read: Armed Driver Tries To Run Down Biker, Flashes Badge Before Real Police Arrive
In another incident, 36 yr-old Doug Rutoskey rear-ended another motorist while under the influence of alcohol. Similarly to the accident in Florida, Rutoskey was driving his patrol car and fled the scene after the accident. He only stopped after he hit a construction barrier with his patrol car.
Rutoskey was booked on charges of leaving the scene of an accident, operating a vehicle with an ACE (Alcohol Concentration Equivalent) of .15 or higher, and operating a vehicle while intoxicated endangering a person. He was subsequently released.
“My opinion is that I was just in shock; I didn’t even know what was going on,” said the man who was in the vehicle that was hit, Roger Mason to WRTV. “Even this morning, after the fact of everything I was just in shock. I can’t believe that this happened.”
Sadly, these sorts of incidents aren’t uncommon. On November 16th, another off-duty police officer, 21-year veteran Sgt. Peter Fekkes of the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police department was issued a summons on allegations of driving under the influence. Fekkes was placed on administrative leave after Ohio highway patrol found an open alcohol container in his crashed Jeep, says FOX59.
Image Credit FOX59News