NWGA Scanner | July 9th, 2021

Dalton man arrested for DUI after being found passed out drunk behind the wheel in bar parking lot

According to a Dalton Police Department incident report, on July 4th, 2021, at approximately 2:08 AM, Officer O’Neal was conducting a bar check at the Tenoch Bar located at 319 North Hamilton Street with Sgt. Corso and Officer Johnson. Officer O’Neal reported, “As we were walking on the front sidewalk next to the city street, [I] observed a 2013 Nissan Altima with the ignition on and brakes applied.” There was a male subject later identified as Ronald Romo, 35, of Dalton asleep in the driver seat. Officer O’Neal reported, “[I] knocked on the window, and he did not wake up. [I] knocked a little harder, and he woke up and put his hand toward the steering wheel. Not knowing if the vehicle was still in park, [I] opened the door and told him to turn the vehicle off. He said, “You are crazy.” [I] could smell a strong odor of alcoholic beverage coming from Romo. His eyes were glossy and red. He was very incoherent with his speech. [I] then said police turn off the car. He said, “You are crazy,” again and reached for the gear shift handle. Concerned that he may drive off down the city street at an undetermined level of intoxication, [I] physically removed him from the vehicle.” Officer Johnson assisted and placed Romo in handcuffs. Romo was escorted to their patrol vehicles. When asked if he had consumed any alcohol, Romo stated he had a couple of beers at the bar. Officer Bell also arrived to assist officers. According to the report, Officer O’Neal asked why Romo was calling him crazy and not turning off the car. He stated the bouncer had come and told him not to drive and turn off the car. Officer O’Neal reported, “[I] then grabbed the portable breathalyzer, and as [I] was walking back to Romo, he stated he did not agree to it. He then stated he had already passed the other tests, and there was no reason for him to do that. Romo, in fact, did not pass the other test and was placed under arrest for being DUI driving under the influence of alcohol. Romo then became very verbally non-compliant with officers. According to the report, “Sgt. Corso asked him who he wanted to tow his vehicle, and he told Sgt. Corso, they would not be towing his vehicle. While reading implied consent, Romo kept talking over the officer. Romo was transported to Whitfield County Jail. On the way, he became very argumentative and was getting loud. At one point, he was very loud, so Officer O’Neal turned up his radio to drown out Romo yelling. Romo remained this way even when at the jail. The jail staff had him provide a sample on a portable breathalyzer, and he gave a BAC sample of .108. Romo was charged with DUI.