Published: Saturday, October 13, 2007
Columbiana County sheriff faces DUI and other charges
Smith didn't participate in field tests to determine his sobriety, the patrol said.
LISBON Columbiana County's highest ranking law enforcement officer is charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated, and authorities say he tried to talk his way out of it.
Sheriff David L. Smith will be in Cambridge Municipal Court in a Guernsey County on Wednesday for a hearing.
According to reports from the Ohio State Highway Patrol, state troopers clocked Smith traveling at 81 mph in a 65 mph zone just after 9:30 p.m. Thursday on Interstate 70 in Guernsey County.
Smith, reports said, passed up other vehicles and nearly made contact with a tractor-trailer going the same direction.
Highway patrol reports said Smith was pulled over and, with red eyes and slurred speech, told the officer he was coming from the Buckeye Sheriff's dinner in Columbus. He then identified himself as the Columbiana County sheriff.
Smith, reports say, repeatedly identified himself as a sheriff and eventually asked the officer to "just let him go," stating that he would allow the officer to go if the tables were turned.
He also stated that he had elections coming up and did not need a DUI arrest, according to the reports.
Smith would not participate in field tests to determine if he was intoxicated, reports said. A urine sample was collected and sent to a crime lab.
Lt. Tony Bradshaw, state patrol public information officer, said Smith is charged with speeding, driving outside marked lanes and operating a vehicle intoxicated.
Smith declined to comment Friday regarding the matter and referred questions to his lawyer, Atty. Lawrence Stacey, who could not be reached.