JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A Jacksonville police officer who survived a scrape with death last year was arrested last week on suspicion of driving under the influence.
Officer Jeremy Shane Mason, 42, was behind the wheel of a GMC pickup that was seen speeding and weaving along Cassat Avenue shortly after 1 a.m. Sept. 10, according to a copy of his arrest report.
An officer pulled over the pickup after the driver blew through a construction zone and had to slam on his brakes to avoid crashing into a bulldozer, the report stated.
The officer noted that Mason showed several signs he might be drunk — he was slurring his words, had bloodshot eyes and smelled like alcohol.
"He started to hand me his debit card and I reminded him I asked for his license," the officer stated.
The officer said Mason had trouble speaking because of throat surgeries. "The subject stated he was shot in the throat," the officer wrote, noting a large scar visible on Mason's neck.
Once out of the vehicle, Mason refused the officer's requests to submit to a breath test and field sobriety exercises to determine if he was intoxicated, according to the report.
Mason was booked into the Duval County jail on a misdemeanor DUI charge and released on his own recognizance several hours later, jail records show.
Jacksonville Sheriff's Office spokesperson Officer Melissa Bujeda said Mason is currently on medical leave. He was wounded in the line of duty in a July 25, 2017, shootout with a bank robbery suspect.
"Once the criminal investigation is completed, then (the Sheriff's Office) can start the internal investigation," Bujeda told News4Jax over the phone.
The Sheriff's Office routinely calls news conferences to announce the arrests of officers and civilian employees facing criminal charges. It's unclear why the agency did not in Mason's case.
Mason has filed a written plea of not guilty through his attorney, Phil Vogelsang, according to Duval County court records. Reached Friday morning, Vogelsang declined to comment on the arrest.
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