Real Life Somerville Police Stories:OUI Arrest

On Monday, April 11, 2022, at 10:52 P.M., Somerville Police control received a 9-1-1 call from a male party reporting a single motor vehicle crash in the area of 51 Tufts Street. The reporting party stated a male driver with no passengers in the vehicle struck a fire hydrant.

Officer Pavao responded and located the driver/registered owner identified as Jose LOPEZ-MOLINA outside the vehicle with the driver’s side door open.
I arrived on scene and observed a gray 2007 Subaru Legacy bearing Massachusetts registration XXXX on the sidewalk. The vehicle had heavy front-end damage and a fire hydrant knocked from its base was approximately three feet away from the vehicle. It should be noted that only the driver-side airbag was deployed indicating no passengers were present during the crash.

I spoke to LOPEZ and detected a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage on his breath; his eyes were glassy and bloodshot and his speech was slurred. Somerville Fire and EMS responded and evaluated LOPEZ. Once he was cleared by the EMTs, I asked him if he was driving the vehicle, and he stated he was. I then asked him if he consumed any alcoholic beverages and he stated he did. I asked LOPEZ how many drinks he had, he replied “Three Modelos” at his friend’s house located at XXX Pearl Street in Somerville.

I asked LOPEZ to walk to the sidewalk to conduct standardized field sobriety test (SFST) and while he was waking, I noticed he was unsteady on his feet and had a hard time taking a few steps.

The first test I administered was the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN)

HGN:
During this test, LOPEZ was unable to follow the stimulus; he moved his head left and right and did not follow the instructions. I asked LOPEZ to touch the tip of the pen with his finger to make sure he understood what part of the pen he should focus on but he was unable to bring the tip of his finger to the tip of the pen.

One Leg Stand:
I instructed LOPEZ to stand with his heels together and arms by his side, and raise one leg approximately six inches off the ground, foot parallel to the ground, keep both legs straight and keep eyes on the elevated foot, and while holding that position to count out loud; one thousand and one, one thousand and two, one thousand and three, and so forth until told to stop. While standing on his right foot, LOPEZ raised his left foot for two seconds then put it down, and raised his arms for balance. LOPEZ tried a second time and was unable to raise his foot off the ground for more than two seconds. The test was terminated for safety reasons.

Based on my observations, I placed LOPEZ under arrest for OUI Liquor, unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, and uninsured motor vehicle. He was transported to the Somerville Police Headquarters via unit 200, operated by Officer McDaid, and booked by Lieutenant DeOLiveira.

During the booking process, Lieutenant DeOLiveira advised LOPEZ of his rights and asked him to submit to a chemical test of his breath. Officer Ducasse who is fluent in Spanish interpreted for LOPEZ. LOPEZ refused to take the test.

I issued citation# T1793508 to LOPEZ for the above-mentioned offenses and placed it on his property along with a notice of suspension for a chemical test refusal.

Respectfully,

Ofc. Samir Messaoudi #312
Somerville Police Dept.

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