Stratford police made two drunk driving arrests last week in which the operators were reportedly passed out at the wheel.
Police charged an Ansonia man Friday with operating under the influence after he was allegedly found asleep at the wheel with his foot on the brake pedal of his running pickup truck.
A Stratford police officer was dispatched to the area of the Route 15 southbound exit ramp at 5:27 p.m. Friday on a report of an unresponsive driver, according to a police report. Upon arrival, the officer observed a pickup truck stopped at a green light, the report said.
The officer realized the car was running as he approached the driver’s side window, where he allegedly saw the operator passed out behind the wheel with his head tilted back and mouth ajar, police said. The car, which had its windows closed and doors locked, was in drive and the operator’s foot was on the brake pedal, according to the report.
The report said there were “several empty beer cans thrown throughout the truck.”
The officer reportedly moved his cruiser in front of the truck so to prevent the vehicle from harming others if and when the operator awoke. After knocking on the truck’s window, the driver came to and removed his foot from the brake pedal, causing the truck to strike the cruiser’s rear bumper, the report said.
The officer then opened the truck’s door and could reportedly smell alcohol on the operator’s breath, as the driver slurred his words and seemed confused, at one point asking where he was, police said.
James Couillard, 50, of 154 Benz St., Ansonia, reportedly admitted to drinking “a lot” of alcohol throughout the afternoon, police said. Couillard was placed under arrest and transported to Stratford police headquarters, where a breathalyzer test allegedly showed BAC levels of .207 and .216.
Couillard was charged with operating under the influence and unsafe movement. He was unable to post his $5,000 bond.
A Stratford man also faces drunk driving charges after an off-duty Stratford police officer reportedly saw the resident’s car stopped at an intersection as the light cycled through a couple times.
An officer was sent to assist the off-duty officer at the intersection of Main Street and Highland Avenue on Thursday, Oct. 20, at 11:32 p.m., according to a police report.
Upon inspection of the vehicle, the operator, Joseph Marino, 31, of Allyndale Drive, was allegedly passed out behind the wheel as the vehicle idled in park, the report said. Officers tapped on the driver’s side window and Marino, instead of rolling down the window, tapped back, police said.
Marino rolled down the window after police said they would smash it in if he continued to protest, the report said.
There was alcohol on Marino’s breath as he clumsily exited the vehicle, police said. The report said Marino failed three standardized field sobriety tests and, later at headquarters, a breathalyzer test allegedly showed BAC levels of .2198 and .2081.
Marino was charged with driving while intoxicated. He was unable to post his $500 bond.
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