An off-duty St Louis police officer was recently placed under arrest after reportedly crashing into a city-owned, Fire department SUV that had been parked outside of a fire department chief’s house. The officer, 37, was reportedly not injured in the auto wreck, and he is currently being investigated for suspected drunk driving.
Investigation Details and Witness Accounts
Although few details about this crash and the investigation have been released, here is what is know so far about this wreck (based on the latest police reports and statements):
- The off-duty officer came to a stop on the lawn of the deputy fire chief’s home.
- The unmarked fire department SUV was parked in the driveway. The department has five such vehicles.
- Internal affairs investigators are taking part in an ongoing investigation into the crash.
- The off-duty officer was arrested and released, charges pending the outcome of the investigation.
- The off-duty officer has worked for the police department for nearly 14 years
What Happens When a Police Officer Gets a DUI?
Police are not above the law, so when they get caught for a drunk driving crash they are usually subject to a higher outcry over shame than a regular citizen. If the follow occurs, then there are generally more consequences for the police officer involved in a suspected DUI car crash.
- Were other cars or trucks impacted? Was there an accident with physical damage or human injury?
- What is the officer’s driving record? If he’s had any other traffic infractions, his penalty will likely be more severe.
- There is usually great pressure for the arrested officer to plead with his coworkers to “badge out” the arrest and let the driver go without arrest for DUI. If this is proved, it would also go against the officer and any conspirators.
- If the officer is drunk, while on duty it always ends in the officer being fired from their job.
- Some officers prefer to resign their post, instead of incurring additional disciplinary action.
- Some other penalties include putting officers on indefinite leave, temporary suspension, and possibly sending them to rehab.
Seeking Compensation and Punitive Damages
If the officer had been drunk while on-duty at the time of the accident, a plaintiff could name the driver/officer and police department as defendants since the incident could have occurred on the clock.
In this case, however, since the officer was off duty (and it’s not yet clear whether alcohol impairment was involved), it’s best to consult an attorney for more specific guidance about the available legal remedies – and the best options for recovery and justice.
Contact a St Louis Car Accident Lawyer at Brown & Brown Attorneys at Law
If you or someone you love has been hurt in a car accident – or any type of traffic wreck – that may have been caused by another motorist, contact the St Louis car accident lawyers at Brown & Brown Attorneys at Law at 573-333-3333 for our Missouri office or at 618-888-8888 for our Illinois office. You can also email us using the form at the right-hand side of the screen.
When you contact us, you can rely on receiving clear, honest information about your rights and your best options for recovery.