Here’s an ironic set of circumstances: a Florida cop, intended to be honored at a Mothers Against Drunk Driving awards banquet for making over one hundred DUI arrests, ended up being too drunk to actually attend the ceremony.
Michael Szeliga, a deputy for the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Department, was seen stumbling outside the Fort Lauderdale venue before the event by the Gulfport Police Chief Robert Vincent. Vincent deemed him “wasted” and told him to go back to his hotel room, at which point Szeliga became a bit belligerent and “disrespectful.” He was later found roaming a hotel hallway in nothing but his underwear.
Earlier in the day, Szeliga decided not to attend DUI enforcement training, which is part of the reason he had traveled to Fort Lauderdale in the first place. Instead, he and a few other officers began to drink. Szeliga denies the extent of the incident and claims he only consumed “two to three drinks” that day.
Szeliga didn’t suffer any lasting consequences (the department only gave him a day’s paid suspension and he was forced to write an apology letter), but the glaring irony of the situation remains.
A similar situation occurred earlier this year in August when MADD chapter president, David Griffin, was arrested for a DUI—Griffin resigned from his position.
As always, we can count on Florida for stories so strange they seem like satire.
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