NWGA Scanner | February 10th, 2021
According to a Whitfield County Sheriff’s Office, on February 3rd, 2021, around 4:30 PM, Dispatch advised via radio of a possible drunk driver on I-75 northbound around the 325-mile marker. Dispatch advised that the vehicle was failing to maintain its lane of travel, and the vehicle had almost caused a crash. A deputy observed the vehicle on I-75 northbound around the 333-mile marker. The deputy conducted a traffic stop on the vehicle for failure to maintain its lane. Another deputy who was assisting with the stop spoke with the driver. The deputy identified himself to the driver Travis Binder, 27, of Ooltewah, TN, and asked him where he was coming from. Binder stated that he was coming from the Atlanta area. The deputy noticed Binder had glassy eyes and also noticed an odor of alcoholic beverage. When asked if he had been drinking, Binder stated no. Binder was asked to step out of the vehicle and to the rear of the vehicle. Binder was unsteady on his feet when he got out of the pickup truck. Binder agreed to do some field sobriety tests. During the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus test, the deputy observed six out of six clues and also observed Vertical Nystagmus that indicates a high level of blood alcohol. The deputy observed several clues of impairment during the other test. The deputy asked Binder to take the Alco-Sensor test. Binder stated, “I’d rather not. It’s not going to be good for me.” Binder then asked the deputy if he was going to jail. Binder was then placed under arrest for DUI. Binder was read Georgia Implied Consent Notice for suspects age 21 and over. Before the deputy started reading the notice, Binder stated that he had been drinking. Binder interrupted the deputy and stated that he would take the test. A deputy was checking the vehicle and located two empty mini bottles of raspberry 90 proof alcohol. One bottle was located in the pocket of the driver’s side door, and the second was located in the passenger side door pocket. Binder was transported to the Whitfield County Jail. Binder asked the deputy if he knew he was drunk. The deputy stated that he did because that’s what the field sobriety is design to do. Before the state breath test, Binder stated that he did not want to blow into the machine. Binder further stated, “I know my blood alcohol level, and it’s embarrassing.” The deputy entered into the Intoxilyzer as a refusal from Binder. Booking staff later got Binder to take the Alco-Sensor test, and it showed .235 BAC. Binder was charged with failure to maintain lane, open container of alcohol, and DUI less safe.