What makes the hero mentality of some firefighters tarnish the reputation of their fellow firefighters to make them believe that they can drive drunk without causing injury to others? It’s the same ingredient that causes everyone else, in any occupation to do the same thing = booze – which causes stupidity to take over brain functions and often leads to death on the highway for innocent people.
The following are reports of two firefighters with the same last name who work in the same fire department in the same town who were arrested for DUI just about a year apart.
Palm Harbor firefighter asked for ‘professional courtesy’ to not be arrested for DUI
Deputies assigned to the Patrol Operations Bureau have arrested a Palm Harbor firefighter for Driving Under the Influence.
At about 9:06 p.m. on Sunday, September 29, 2019, the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office Communications Center received 911 calls from at least three different citizens regarding the erratic driving pattern of a silver or grey colored Dodge Ram truck that was traveling northbound on U.S. Highway 19 North, between SR 580 and Curlew Road.
The callers provided the tag number for the Dodge truck and said the vehicle was swerving in the roadway and nearly struck the median and multiple vehicles. One caller said they thought the driver was falling asleep at the wheel.
Deputies responded to the area but could not locate the vehicle. They then responded to the home address of the registered owner in Palm Harbor where they located the Dodge Ram truck parked at the residence.
Deputies say 29-year-old Thomas Walker was sitting in the driver seat of the vehicle with the engine running. There were no other occupants in the vehicle.
When asked to perform Field Sobriety Tests, Walker refused and asked for “professional courtesy.”Pinellas County Sheriff
Deputies made contact with Walker who showed signs of impairment by having bloodshot, glassy eyes and he had the distinct odor of an alcoholic beverage coming from his breath.
When asked to perform Field Sobriety Tests, Walker refused and asked for “professional courtesy.”
Police say that Walker refused to provide a breath sample and refused to answer any questions, and was arrested and transported to the Pinellas County Jail.
Walker was charged with one count of Driving Under the Influence.
Thomas Coty Walker (Arrested)
Employment: Palm Harbor Fire Department
Charges: One count of Driving Under the Influence
Another Palm Harbor firefighter, also named Walker, was busted for DUI in 2018 – is there beer in the fire department soda machine?
From the Pinellas County Sheriff:
Deputies assigned to the Patrol Operations Bureau – DUI Unit, have arrested a Palm Harbor Firefighter for Driving Under the Influence (DUI).
At about 11:07 p.m. on Saturday, November 17, 2018, deputies observed a 2011 Dodge Ram on US Highway 19 North, just south of Klosterman Road, which appeared to be speeding. Once deputies were behind the vehicle, it was determined the vehicle was traveling at approximately 20 miles per hour over the speed limit. Deputies also observed the vehicle drifting into other lanes and almost striking a passing vehicle.
Deputies also observed the vehicle drifting into other lanes and almost striking a passing vehicle.
Deputies made contact with the driver who was identified as 28-year-old Jonathan Walker. Upon making contact with Walker, deputies could detect the distinct odor of alcoholic beverage coming from inside the vehicle.
Deputies noted Walker showed signs of impairment by having bloodshot, glassy eyes and a distinct odor of an alcoholic beverage coming from his mouth. Walker agreed to perform Field Sobriety Tests but performed poorly on them.
Walker submitted a breath sample which indicated he had a BrAC of .227/.221.
Walker was arrested and charged with one count of DUI and transported to the Pinellas County Jail without incident.
Jonathan Walker (Arrested)
Employment: Palm Harbor Fire Department
Charges: Driving Under the Influence
Statement from the Palm Harbor Fire Department:
“Palm Harbor Fire Rescue’s administration is still gathering information and will conduct a full investigation. No further information will be available at this time as it is under investigation.”