‘Public Safety Issue’: Maryland Officer’s 4th DUI Arrest In 2008


A veteran lieutenant in Prince George’s County, Md., was charged recently with driving under the influence of alcohol — for the fourth time this year, reports the Washington Post. Two of the drunken driving charges against Lt. Kenneth W. Parrish were dropped by county prosecutors, one of them in a plea deal and the other when the arresting officer failed to appear for a court hearing. Parrish, 44, was suspended with pay in February after he was charged with driving under the influence while operating a county police cruiser off-duty in Laurel.

Acting county Police Chief Roberto Hylton said that police officials take Parrish’s conduct seriously and that internal investigations are continuing. “We understand this is a public safety issue,” Hylton said. In the most recent incident, Parrish was arrested Friday when Montgomery County police found him asleep behind the wheel of his Cadillac Escalade near a gas pump in Silver Spring, with the car in drive and his foot on the brake pedal, according to a charging document. A breath test showed that Parrish had a blood-alcohol level more than three times the legal limit for driving under the influence, the document says. Parrish was unable to stand on his own and admitted to drinking a half-pint of vodka that morning, the document says. Hylton said Parrish, a 20-year member of the police force, had an exemplary record before the recent arrests. Hylton said Parrish has had a difficult year, struggling with the death of his mother and the breakup of his marriage.

Link: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/12/16/AR2008121602620.html

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