John Wheeler

Name:
Wheeler, John Michael

Date of Booking:
06/25/2022

Reason(s) For Booking:
DUI – DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF ALCOHOL

FAILURE TO MAINTAIN LANE

NO SEATBELT/CHILD UNDER 6 – 1ST OFFENSE

Officer’s Narrative:
[Please note: The following is a direct transcription from the officer’s narrative report. We do not fix any spelling or grammatical errors. Any changes made by our staff are placed inside brackets. Some errors may exist.]

On Saturday, June 26, 2022, at approximately 2151 hours, I was traveling north on Sunbury Road at Dunwoody Ct. I observed a white Ford F-350 with a Georgia license plate display of [REDACTED] traveling directly in front of me. I observed the vehicle fail to maintain its lane by traveling over the yellow center line dividing the southbound and northbound lanes. The vehicle failed to maintain its lane three times in less than a mile. I conducted a traffic stop using my emergency lights and sirens.

I exited my patrol vehicle and conducted a passenger’s side approach to the vehicle. When the driver let down the front driver’s side window, I could smell an overwhelming odor of burnt marijuana emitting within the vehicle. I identified myself and advised the driver of the reason for the stop. I requested the driver of the vehicle to display his driver’s license. He was identified as Mr. Wheeler by his Georgia driver’s license. I observed his eyes to be bloodshot and watery, and he was slowly blinking. I also observed him holding a two-year-old child in his lap, not restrained while traveling public roads. I asked Mr. Wheeler about the child not being properly secured, and he stated he was only two miles from his house and it was a “back road.” I instructed Mr. Wheeler out of the truck and to the front of my patrol vehicle. I asked Mr. Wheeler when was the last time he consumed marijuana, and he stated one hour ago.

While talking to Mr. Wheeler, I could smell a strong odor of green marijuana emitting from Mr. Wheeler’s person. I asked Mr. Wheeler if he had any marijuana on his person and he stated yes. He pulled a clear small bag out of his right sock. The bag contained a green leafy substance. I suspect it to be marijuana due to my training, knowledge, and experience and Mr. Wheeler’s admission.

I asked Mr. Wheeler if he would participate in a series of Standardized Field Sobriety Tests to make sure he was safe to drive, and he stated “yes.”

Field Sobriety Tests:
This evaluation was performed on the shoulder of Sunbury Road. The evaluation surface was straight and level on the blacktop. Lighting conditions consisted of patrol vehicle headlights, spotlights, takedown lights, and my flashlight. No surface defects were noted or claimed.

Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (explained):
I observed a lack of smooth pursuit in both Mr. Wheeler’s eyes, and did not observe any other clues. Mr. Wheeler was swaying while conducting the evaluation, and I observed two out of six clues.

Walk and Turn (explained and demonstrated):
Instruction Stage: Lost balance
Walking Stage (1st Nine): Missed heel to toe, steps offline, used arms to balance, and improper turn.
Walking Stage (2nd Nine): Missed heel to toe, steps offline, used arms to balance. I observed a total of five out of eight clues.

One Leg Stand (explained and demonstrated):
Mr. Wheeler swayed significantly and used his arms to balance. I observed a total of two out of four clues.

I conducted the Lack of Convergence evaluations. I explained the evaluation to Mr. Wheeler, and he stated he understood. I held my stimulus, (my finger) approximately 12 inches from his eyes. Mr. Wheeler was then asked if he could see the stimulus, and he gave a verbal “yes.” I explained that I wanted him to follow the stimulus with his eyes and his eyes only without moving his head. Mr. Wheeler’s eyes did not converge on the stimulus.

I then conducted the Modified Romberg evaluation. I explained to Mr. Wheeler I wanted him to put his feet together, tilt his head back, and estimate the passing of 30 seconds in his head. Once he believed 30 seconds had passed, he was told to tell me to stop. Mr. Wheeler stated he understood the instructions. Mr. Wheeler told me to stop timing at 22 seconds. I also observed severe eyelid twitching, front to rear sway, and body tremors.

Based on my observations and the admission of illegal narcotics consumption before driving, I placed Mr. Wheeler under arrest in double-locked handcuffs, which were checked for fit. I searched him incident to arrest, and no contraband was found. I escorted him to my patrol vehicle’s rear passenger’s side, and he was placed in the back seat. The rear seat of my patrol vehicle was searched prior to the beginning of my shift, with no contraband found. I read Mr. Wheeler the Georgia Implied Consent Notice for Suspects Age 21 or over from my green implied consent card on scene. Mr. Wheeler provided a verbal yes to the state-administered test of his blood.

The evidence collected from Mr. Wheeler’s person was secured in a bag and placed in the front seat of my patrol car. It was documented on evidence/property receipt #09482 and later placed in the narcotics drop box located in the sally port at the jail.

I allowed Mr. Wheeler to call someone to retrieve his vehicle and the child located in it. The child was turned over to Mr. Wheeler’s wife, and the truck was turned over to his mother-in-law.

I transported Mr. Wheeler to Liberty Regional medical for the state-administered chemical test of his blood. Nurse [REDACTED] drew his blood. It was documented on evidence/property. A GBI evidence submission form was filled, and the blood kit was placed in evidence locker #7.

I transported Mr. Wheeler to the Liberty County jail, and he was turned over to jail staff without incident. The rear seat of my patrol vehicle was searched prior to leaving the jail with no contraband found. Mr. Wheeeler received three citations for driving under the influence, child safety restraint, and failure to maintain lane.

[End of Narrative]