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Published: Friday, 9/4/2009

Man tells officer he is drunk, asks to be arrested

BY JC REINDL
BLADE STAFF WRITER

A 43-year-old Michigan man decided early yesterday to end his self-proclaimed drunken-driving habit by turning himself in to Washington Township police, authorities said.

According to police reports, Timothy E. England of Cassopolis, Mich., a village 150 miles west of Toledo and 20 miles north of Elkhart, Ind., left Platinum Showgirls on Telegraph Road and drove east in his rental car until he spotted a police cruiser involved in a traffic stop along the 900 block of East Alexis Road.

Mr. England then parked his car behind the patrol car, police said. As a surprised officer approached to see if he needed help, Mr. En gland told the officer that he was driving while extremely drunk, and confessed how “it was about time I got caught,” said Chief Christopher Kaiser of Washington Township police.

The officers reported “a strong odor of intoxicants” coming from inside the rental car. They noted Mr. England's slurred speech, and how he staggered around and needed to grasp the vehicle's door when asked to step out of the car.

A test later showed Mr. En gland's blood alcohol level at 0.27 percent — more than three times above the legal limit of 0.08 percent for driving, police said. Mr. England is 6-feet, 5-inches tall and weighs 260 pounds.

While the officers appreciated

Mr. England's honesty, he was arrested for operating a vehicle while intoxicated and booked into the Lucas County jail, Chief Kaiser said.

The chief said he never before encountered a motorist who turned himself in that way.

Though it was unclear yesterday whether Mr. England has a criminal record for intoxicated driving, the chief said he suspected that such activity may have been routine for Mr. England and that the suspect somehow managed before to not get caught.

“The feeling I get is he just got to a point and said, ‘Oh man, enough is enough,'” Chief Kaiser said.

Attempts by The Blade to reach Mr. England yesterday were unsuccessful.

But police heard back from Mr. England around 10 a.m., when he inquired about his car, a red Chevrolet Cobalt from Enterprise Rent-a-Car in Northwood, which was taken away by Hammer's Towing, Inc.

Mr. England seemed over the phone to be in good spirits, Chief Kaiser said.

“He called this morning to pick his car up and he was just thankful and happy that we got him,” the chief said. “You don't find that too often.”

His license suspended, Mr. England was released on $5,000 bond and took a taxi to retrieve his rental car from the Hammer's Towing lot on West Alexis Road, a stone's throw from the Platinum Showgirls he visited earlier.

Platinum Showgirls manager, Randy Sinnes, said he was unaware of any problems in the club Wednesday night involving anyone of Mr. England's description.

A Hammer's Towing worker next drove Mr. England in the rental car to the Michigan border, where he handed over the keys for Mr. En gland's drive back to Cassopolis.

Although Mr. England is prohibited from driving in Ohio, the drunken driving charge didn't prohibit him from doing so in Michigan, Chief Kaiser said.

Julie Leggett, executive director for Mothers Against Drunk Driving for northern Ohio, said this was the first time she had heard of an alleged drunk driver turning himself in on the road.

“Thank goodness for what could have been,” she said.

“This was certainly in the best interest of all the innocent people out there and for his own future.”

Mr. England is to be arraigned Sept. 9 in Toledo Municipal Court.

Contact JC Reindl at:jreindl@theblade.comor 419-724-6065.


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