Although a Coon Rapids, Minnesota, man reportedly blew a 0.00 percent alcohol level in a roadside preliminary breath test, law enforcement arrested the man on suspicion of driving while impaired. A Coon Rapids Police officer says that he saw a car driving without its headlights on shortly after 3:45 a.m. on August 5. The officer followed the car, which police say was driving 15 miles per hour under the speed limit.
The officer watched the car weave within its traffic lane. When the car allegedly crossed the center line near Rapids Drive and Main Street in Coon Rapids, the officer apparently decided to conduct a traffic stop. During the encounter, the officer had the driver perform field sobriety tests, which the cop claims the driver did not perform satisfactorily. But the PBT showed that the man had not been drinking. Nonetheless, the officer arrested the man on suspicion of DWI drugs.
Authorities say that the driver’s fiancée was riding as a passenger in the car that early Sunday morning. Police claim that the woman told law enforcement that the driver had taken methadone around 7:00 the night before the DWI drugs arrest–or nearly nine hours before the traffic stop. Police claim that the woman suggested that the driver may have taken Xanax at some point as well.
The driver reportedly refused to submit a blood or urine sample. Law enforcement claims that a so-called drug recognition expert was called in to evaluate the driver. Generally, a drug recognition expert is an officer that has had some training to look for indicia of drug use. The DRE apparently concluded that the driver was impaired by some kind of controlled substance.
Authorities claim that the driver has three prior qualified impaired driving incidents within the past ten years. A criminal complaint says that the man had a fourth-degree DWI in 2003, a third-degree DWI in 2004 and a second-degree DWI in 2011, according to KSTP News. This blog has previously discussed how prior DWI convictions or impaired driving license revocations can be used to enhance a current charge to a higher level of offense.
Source: KSTP. “Coon Rapids Man Charged with 2 Counts of DWI,” Jennie Olson, Aug. 9, 2012