Oakland County prosecutors charged 12-year veteran Troy Police Officer Candice LeForest with driving under the influence with a blood-alcohol level greater than .17.A $1,000 bond was set during her arraignment Tuesday. The case has been transferred from Troy to Novi's 52nd District Court to avoid any possible conflict of interest in the officer's jurisdiction.
Troy police pulled LeForest over
after observing her strike the median curb twice on eastbound Big Beaver
Road about 12:30 a.m. Jan. 18.
LeForest, a 34-year-old Macomb
resident, declined a breathalyzer and officers obtained a search warrant
authorizing a blood test be conducted. State police forensic analysts
determined LeForest had a blood-alcohol content of .27, three times the
maximum allowed while driving in Michigan.
A blood-alcohol level
above .17 percent qualifies as "super drunk." Under Michigan's Super
Drunk law, penalties increase from up to 93 to 180 days of possible jail
time and nearly doubles the cost of court fines. Anyone convicted under
the Super Drunk law loses their driver's license
for 45 days, is under restricted driving limitations for 320 days and
required to install an ignition device that forces the driver to take a
breathalyzer each time they start their vehicle.
MLive Detroit could not reach Troy Police Department spokesman Sgt. Andy Breidenich for comment Friday.
Troy police issued a statement regarding LeForest's arrest on Jan. 28. As of Tuesday, LeForest was on paid administrative leave.
County Chief Assistant Prosecutor Paul Walton said his office can
charge based on field sobriety tests but usually waits for blood-test
results in cases when a breathalyzer is declined.
He said getting the authority for blood sample in suspected DUI cases is "routine" but rather complex.
agency completes paperwork requesting a search warrant, sends it to a
judge or magistrate and awaits a signature. The officers then transport
the suspect to a hospital where a certified nurse or doctor must extract
several blood samples using a special kit that stops blood coagulation.
Samples throughout the state are then sent to the state police crime
lab for analysis. Results can take weeks.