Deputies: Man admits to drinking bourbon at stop signs, but not while driving

Deputies: Man admits to drinking bourbon at stop signs, but not while driving. (Indian River County Sheriff's Office)

Deputies arrested a man in Vero Beach after he admitted to drinking in his vehicle at stop signs, but not while his vehicle was in motion.

The Indian River County Sheriff's Office responded to a McDonald's drive-thru on S. U.S. Highway 1 on June 27 after someone complained about a man driving his vehicle into the back of another "over and over."

Deputies approached the driver, 69-year-old Earle Stevens Jr. and asked him for his license. According to the arrest report, Stevens handed deputies a Florida ID card and said he did not have a valid Florida driver's license.

The sheriff's office says Stevens had an open bottle of Jim Bean Bourbon in a brown paper bag. Deputies also say Stevens smelled of alcohol, had slurred speech, and glossy eyes. When the deputy asked how Stevens was feeling he responded with, "I'm feeling pretty good."

According to the report, deputies asked Stevens to get out of the vehicle and ask if he was drinking. He told deputies he had three drinks, and admitted to drinking straight from the bottle. When deputies asked Stevens where he was drinking he explained he was drinking at stop signs and traffic signals, but not while the car was moving.

Deputies also asked Stevens if he hit the rear bumper of the vehicle in front of him, according to the release, and Stevens denied it. Deputies also found three prescription pill bottles in Stevens' vehicle. According to the release, Stevens said he was coming from the doctor and was prescribed the medications last week. Stevens also admitted to drinking while driving from Port St. Lucie to Indian River County.

Deputies arrested Stevens for driving under the influence and driving without a valid Florida license. Stevens also has two prior DUI charges from Missouri.

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