Cop With A Sense Of Irony Gets Too Housed To Accept An Award From Mothers Against Drunk Driving


You gotta give it to Pinellas County Michael Szeliga. After all, it’s Mothers Against Drunk Driving, not Mothers Against Drunken Debauchery.

Szeliga was set to receive an award from the organization at a conference for making over 100 DUI arrests. But he was denied the opportunity to go on stage after getting too drunk beforehand. From WFLA:

Michael Szeliga packed a bottle of Jameson Irish whiskey, as part of his luggage, in his sheriff’s patrol car before driving to the Hyatt Regency Pier 66 Hotel in Fort Lauderdale with two other deputies. They were there for two days of DUI law enforcement training.

Szeliga was also supposed to receive a MADD award for making more than 100 DUI arrests. But alcohol got in the way.

According to a 274-page Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office internal affairs investigation, Szeliga ran into trouble when one witness said he arrived staggeringly drunk at the Friday night banquet. That’s where Szeliga was supposed to receive his MADD award in front of about 200 other invited guests.

He’d apparently been boozing all day, even while doing DUI training before the ceremony.

Szeliga signed in and attended a morning session of the DUI enforcement training but left with two other deputies following the first break.

Szeliga told investigators he returned to his hotel room, poured himself a few Coke and whiskey cocktails and headed down to the pool area with the other two deputies who skipped the training. Szeliga said one of the other deputies had also brought a bottle of Crown Royal for the weekend.

Then it was party time.

Szeliga and the other deputies were on duty when they decided to skip the training and head to the pool. Some deputies went swimming. Szeliga told investigators he played the “cornhole” bean bag game with a fellow deputy while consuming his Jameson cocktails.

As evening approached, Szeliga and his Pinellas deputy roommate were dressing for the awards banquet when a fire alarm sounded in their wing of the hotel. That’s when, according to the records, a Pasco County sergeant who runs the DUI squad in that county reported seeing Szeliga in the hotel hallway wearing “nothing but boxer shorts.” The sergeant said, “He was pretty drunk when I saw him.”

He then went to the banquet where his supervisor sent him away after smelling alcohol on his breath, and realizing how intoxicated he was. The supervisor didn’t think it would be appropriate for him to get an award in that condition.

Which is probably true.

[Via The Daily Kos]

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