JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The primary investigative police officer was reprimanded for his handling of the crash in which Jaguars running back Denard Robinson fell asleep at the wheel and drove into a retention pond, according to a Jacksonville Sheriff's Office Internal Affairs report.
Officer F. Camacho was found to have failed to conform to work standards, the 19-page report obtained by News4Jax Thursday concluded.
A red-light camera at the intersection of Beach and Southside boulevards captured video in the early morning hours of July 3 just moments before the accident that caught national media attention.
The police report said Robinson, 25, was driving a black Chevy Impala west on Beach Boulevard about 4:30 a.m. July 3 and tried to turn left on Southside Boulevard but made a wide turn that sent the car over a sidewalk and down an embankment into the pond.
No one was injured in the crash, but it took the responding officer some time to get Robinson and his female passenger out of the car, because they did not realize they had run off the road, according to the crash report.
The first two officers at the scene, Officer F. Camacho and Officer J. Alexander, felt Robinson was impaired, Internal Affairs investigators said.
Camacho said he thought he caught a faint smell of alcohol and Alexander felt there might be impairment because it was difficult to wake Robinson up, the report said.
Robinson stated he had been to a bar and he and his girlfriend said he had consumed "little to no alcohol." Robinson and the girlfriend both said they were just dead tired.
They called Officer Matthew Borgert to the scene, a veteran of 900 DUI arrests.
Robinson refused to take a breathalyzer and refused to do a field sobriety test, and said he would not make a statement without a lawyer present, according to the Internal Affairs report.
Borgert did not see any signs of impairment, noted Robinson was alert, steady on his feet and acting courteously to police. Borgert did not feel there was probable cause for a DUI investigation, the report said.
Several officers involved did not realize Robinson was a Jaguar player, until a fireman told them. Robinson said he did not ask for, nor was given, any preferential treatment because he was a Jaguar, and in fact told one lieutenant that the officers were “actually very hard on him.”
Internal Affairs said Camacho did know Robinson was a Jaguar, and felt uncomfortable to perform a DUI investigation due to “the potential for it to garner media attention.” He called a sergeant to come to the scene to assist him.
Gil Smith, News4Jax crime and safety analyst, said the officer made a mistake by not being more detailed in is report.
"It seems like JSO Internal Affairs Division found that Officer Camacho did not perform up to standards by not doing a proper DUI investigation because he was a Jaguar player and hew as aware of it. He was afraid of media attention. For that reason, he didn't feel comfortable doing it," Smith said. "Now, possibly, if it had been anyone other than a Jaguar player, he would have done a more thorough investigation, and may have written a citation. That's why JSO cited him that way."
One of the officers who arrived at the scene later said he felt if the crash did not involve a Jaguar player, he would have asked for a DUI investigation.
Camacho said he didn’t write Robinson a ticket because there was no damage to anything but his car, which he said was a “common practice” in that situation. Camacho admitted he incorrectly did not include the enforcement action taken in his report, contrary to common practice, according to the report.
Internal Affairs noted the “lack of complete information” in the traffic crash report, saying “the reputation of the JSO was needlessly questioned and could have been prevented with a more detailed report."
Camacho was found to have failed to conform to work standards and Borgert was exonerated of the same complaint, the report concluded.
"They were able to admit that was why he didn't do a thorough investigation," Smith said. "Also, he did not include that information in the crash report. He did not include the enforcement action that he took. So they also cited him there for not writing a complete or a proper crash report."
Robinson wasn't initially cited for the crash, but after reviewing the case at the order of Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams, JSO cited Robinson with careless driving.
Robinson pleaded no contest in August and was fined $100.
The Internal Affairs report will now go to Undersheriff Pat Ivey, who will decide what type of discipline Camacho will receive, according to Smith.