Bainbridge police officers had their hands full before the holidays when a suspected DUI driver smacked into another driver three times with his car, then hit a power pole, apple tree and pickup truck before smashing into the side of a garage.
At 12:47 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 23, officers were dispatched to a collision on Eagle Harbor Drive. But the call didn't end there. After a car had rear-ended another vehicle multiple times, it continued up the road before crashing into a power pole, an apple tree and finally into a garage on West Blakely Avenue.
A witness called police after he was rear-ended while driving past Ray's Automotive on Eagle Harbor Drive.
The man told police his vehicle was raised up as a result of the first collision. He was then rear-ended two more times by the same driver as he was traveling southbound on Bucklin Hill Road.
The witness pulled over and the other driver sped off on Blakely Avenue. The car-crash victim pursued the car while calling 911.
As he was on the phone with 911, he saw the other driver go off the road, sideswipe a power pole, then drive 100 feet on grass before hitting an apple tree.
The tree did not stop the car, however, and it continued on and crashed into the garage of a house.
Police reports noted that the car hit the garage at such a high speed that the back end of the vehicle elevated before slamming back on the ground.
The vehicle also struck the front side of a truck parked in the driveway of the home before it smashed into the garage.
The witness followed and parked in the driveway of the home and watched as the driver got out and walked away.
Upon hearing the crash, the homeowner came outside and found the car with the engine still running, horn blaring, and the left front wheel still turning. He then reached inside and turned off the car.
Police arrived and a detective was called in to photograph the scene.
Police and state troopers began searching the area for the driver. They obtained the information on the car's registered owner and went to check his home in Lynwood Center.
But officers were soon called back to the scene when remaining the detective reported that he had a man at gunpoint.
The detective had drawn his firearm on a man in a blackberry bush across the street from the garage. The man was being uncooperative and not showing his hands. He kept yelling that he wanted to be shot.
Officers carefully approached the man and put him in handcuffs.
The man said he would not answer questions or identify himself, and then went through dramatic mood swings marked by anger or laughter.
While officers waited for medical aid to arrive, the man began to snore. He got angry when officers woke him up and asked them to shoot him.
When medical aid arrived he was placed on a stretcher and into an aid car, and emergency personnel noticed he was bloody from the accident.
The witness identified the man as the driver who rear-ended him.
When the man got into the aid car, he looked up at the blood on his hands and asked, "What the (expletive) happened?"
He then refused to take blood or breath tests for blood alcohol levels and asked for an attorney.
At first he asked for a specific lawyer but didn't know the attorney's phone number.
The dispatch center was able to look up the lawyer's phone number, but he did not answer and his voice mail was full.
The man in custody then asked for another attorney. But again, he did not know the number.
Eventually officers were able to get him in touch with a lawyer over the phone and they were allowed to speak privately.
While the crashed vehicle was being impounded, the tow truck driver discovered an empty vodka bottle rolling around the floor of the car.
The man was arrested for DUI and hit-and-run.