Real Life Somerville Police Stories: Eduardo GARCIA (OUI Liquor, Negligent Op of MV & Chelsea Warrant)

On August 3, 2018, while assigned to marked unit East-3, I was travelling on Washington Street, a public way in the city of Somerville. At the intersection of Washington and McGrath, I was behind a motor vehicle bearing MA xxxx at the red light. Upon a random query of the plate, the registered owner, Mr. Eduardo Garcia came back as having a warrant. I then verified the information through CJIS, and during this time the vehicle had travelled several blocks, ending up in front of the Somerville Police Department. I activated my blue emergency lights and siren, directing the vehicle to pull over. I notified Dispatch of the stop and unit Sector-East, Officer Ubeda and Unit East-2, Officer Torres arrived as backup. I requested dispatch to verify the warrant and they did.

I approached the vehicle and requested the operator’s license and registration. As the operator, who was confirmed to be the registered owner, Mr. Garcia, was handing me his license and registration, I noticed his eyes to be blood shot and glassy. I asked him to exit the vehicle and come to the sidewalk so that I would be able to explain to him about the warrant. He was unsteady on his feet as he walked to the back of the vehicle. Upon explaining to him that he had a warrant he began to ask what it was for. His speech was slurred and I could smell the odor of alcohol coming from his breath. I asked if he had had anything to drink this evening and he said No at first. Then he said earlier in the day. I asked if he would perform some field sobriety tests and he agreed. I lead him over to the sidewalk where it was clean, clear of debris and was lit by the white lights of one of the cruisers.

Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus.

MR. Garcia was unable to perform the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus, due to being unable to follow directions and his eyes would not properly follow the stimulus. Mr. Garcia would not follow the stimulus without moving his head. When he was finally able to stop moving his head, he would anticipate the movement of the stimulus and was unable to focus.  I would like to note that prior to giving Mr. Garcia each test, he was given an explanation and demonstration. Before each test began he stated he understood the directions and was given the opportunity to ask for clarification.

Prior to these tests Mr. Garcia stated he did not have any physical disabilities, nor defects that would prevent him from taking the tests. He did state that he was diabetic but when I offered him an ambulance to come check his blood sugar, he declined.  Mr. Garcia was wearing flat soled slide on shoes. I offered him the opportunity to remove them for the tests. He declined to do so for the walk and turn, but elected to remove them for the one leg stand.

Modified Romberg Balance Test:

During this time. Mr. Garcia estimated the passage of 30 seconds in 16 seconds. He exhibited an approximate 3 inch sway both front to back and side to side.

Walk and turn Test.

Mr. Garcia Could not keep his balance during the instructional portion of the test, continually raising his arms for balance and stepping to the right. He started too soon three times. During the initial 9 steps he missed heel to toe on steps 3 and 5, he did not step off the line, and he raised his arms for balance.  On the turn, he did not perform it as demonstrated. Instead of taking a series of small steps, he used both feet in an immediate turn. On the second set of steps, he missed heel to toe on step 3, He did not step off the line, he did raise his arms for balance, and only took 4 steps when he was instructed to take nine.

One Leg Stand:

Mr. Garcia had to be reminded of the instructions several times for this test, as he would stop paying attention and would attempt to begin the test too soon. Mr. Garcia continually stopped counting. In 30 seconds he reached a count of 14. He did sway while balancing, he used his arms for balance, he did hop, and he put his foot down once.

Finger to Nose:

First Attempt- Mr. Garcia touched his right nostril with the pad of his finger Second attempt- Mr. Garcia touched the bridge of his nose with the pad of his finger Third attempt- Mr. Garcia double tapped the tip of his nose with the pad of his finger. Fourth Attempt- Mr. Garcia double tapped his septum with the pad of his finger Fifth attempt- Mr. Garcia Touched his right nostril with the pad of his finger Sixth attempt- Mr. Garcia touched his left nostril with the pad of his finger.

At this Time, East-1, Officer Schneider arrived and Mr. Garcia submitted to a portable breath test. The test results were a 0.22.

I placed Mr. Garcia under arrest and read him his rights from a card I keep on my person. Officer Torres and I walked him to the station due to the less than 50 yards proximity that we were from the building door. During this time Mr. Garcia stated that he had been at home today and before taking a nap had drunk several glasses of whiskey. He believed three or four glasses.

Mr. Garcia was booked in the usual manner by Lieutenant W. Rymill and after given his rights, Mr. Garcia submitted to another breath test, administered by Officer Lambert. The final result being a 0.19. Mr. Garcia was also issued is notice of suspension.

Mr. Garcia’s car was towed at the approval of Sierra-8, Sergeant McCarey.

I issued Mr. Garcia Massachusetts uniform Citation T0402125 for OUI liquor and Negligent Operation of a Motor Vehicle. All OUI forms will be submitted into evidence.

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