Clay County firefighter charged with BUI in boat crash

Report says boat was 'demolished' after crashing into private property

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Florida wildlife authorities recently arrested an off-duty Clay County firefighter on suspicion of boating under the influence after his boat crashed into private property along the St. Johns River.

The arrest happened about 8:15 p.m. May 19 after the driver lost control and the boat crashed near Harvey Grant Road in Orange Park, according to a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission report.

The officer noted in the report that the driver, Michael George Syrakis, smelled strongly of alcohol and was slurring his speech. The report added Syrakis, 43, performed poorly on a series of sobriety tests.

Syrakis was taken into custody and charged with boating under the influence. A breath test taken at the Clay County jail found he had a blood alcohol content of .21 percent. The legal limit in Florida is .08.

The report lists Clay County Fire Rescue as Syrakis' employer. Attempts on Wednesday to reach Fire Chief Lorin Mock and department spokesperson John Ward were not successful.

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