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Deputies: Man Arrested For DUI Was Driving Around With 5-Year-Old

George Palmer
Posted at 12:41 PM, Aug 28, 2014
and last updated 2014-08-28 12:16:57-04

PANACEA, FL (WTXL) --  A New York mas was arrested Friday after deputies said he was driving around Panacea drunk. The man was not alone in the car, he also had a 5-year-old child with him, according to the incident report.

A Wakulla County Deputy responded after someone called to report a drunk driver with a child inside the car. The report said that the suspected drunk driver was in a red Chevrolet Impala.

The deputy said that he saw the Impala driving along Coastal Highway. However, when the deputy turned his car around he could no longer see the red Impala.

As the deputy was driving around the area to find the Impala, he said he finally found it parked behind a local business on 146 Coastal Highway. 

The deputy pulled up in front of the business and walked around back. According to the incident report, the suspect "exited his car while it was still running."

The driver, George Palmer, told the deputy that he had been driving and was trying to hide his car because he knew the deputy was trying to pull him over, stated the incident report.

Deputies said that Palmer admitted to drinking two beers. However, the deputy noted that Palmer had watery bloodshot eyes and smelled of alcohol.

Palmer agreed to take a field sobriety test, said deputies. After several attempts at taking the different tests, the deputy told Palmer that he was going to be arrested.

According to the incident report, Palmer asked if he could talk to the child that was in the car. The deputy agreed, but told Palmer that he would have to do it through the open rear door. That is when the deputy said Palmer repeatedly tried to get in the front seat of the car.

The deputy said that he told Palmer he was now under arrest and to put his hands behind his back, but Palmer refused and began to struggle. According to the incident report, the deputy was able to put handcuffs on one of Palmer's wrists and place him on the ground. However, the deputy said that Palmer was still struggling so he had to taze him.

According to the incident report, once Palmer was tazed, he allowed the deputy to fully handcuff him. Palmer was taken to the Wakulla County Jail and charged with DUI and resisting arrest. His blood alcohol level was over .22, said deputies. The Impala that Palmer was driving turned out to be a rental car and it was towed from the scene.

Florida DCF was called to take custody of the child. The child's mother was located in New York and flew down to get custody of the 5-year-old.