A Prairie du Sac man faces his fourth charge of operating a vehicle while intoxicated after police say he drove while drunk.
Steve Fleming, 68, is charged with operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated—fourth offense. He faces up to six years imprisonment and a fine of up to $10,000 for the charge.
According to the criminal complaint:
A state trooper working near State Highway 12-16 in the area of East Street Aug. 1 observed a vehicle approaching “visibly faster than the posted 55 mph speed limit.”
The trooper activated his squad car’s Stalker Dual DSR moving same lane radar, which “received a clear high tone with a steady radar reading of 75.”
The trooper observed the vehicle was not slowing down and quickly passed his own vehicle on the highway. “There was tone shift as the vehicle exited the radar beam,” the trooper observed.
Upon being passed by the vehicle, the trooper activated his emergency lights and siren. The speeding vehicle activated break lights but was not stopping. The vehicle drifted over the center line of the road “then drifted back into the lane and turned on its left turn signal. The vehicle quickly switched to its right turn signal, pulled over to the shoulder and came to a complete stop.”
The trooper made contact with the driver and asked if there was a reason for the speed of his vehicle. The trooper noted the driver was “staring straight ahead” and his “head was bobbing back and forth.”
The driver, who had “heavy droopy eyelids” said there was no reason for the speed and he wasn’t sure how fast he was going. He apologized for speeding.
The trooper detected a “strong odor of an intoxicating beverage emitting from” the driver’s mouth. The driver had “a combination of chewing tobacco and spit on his lips, chin, and shirt.” The shirt bore a nametag which read “Steve Fleming”.
When asked to provide his driver’s license, the driver, identified as Fleming, handed over two separate objects to the trooper before realizing they weren’t his license.
Fleming stated he was coming from “a class reunion near Mauston.” He said he was on his way to the Wisconsin Dells area. He said he’d consumed two 8 oz. cups of wine and his last drink was 30-45 minutes prior to the traffic stop.
When the trooper asked Fleming if he was willing to perform field sobriety tests, his response was “no.”
At this time, Fleming stepped down on the accelerator of the vehicle causing “the engine to roar.”
The trooper asked Fleming to clarify whether he was refusing to undergo field sobriety tests. Fleming responded by asking what the word “refusing” meant.
The trooper stated refusing meant he “didn’t want to do the tests.” The trooper said if Fleming refused he would rely on the totality of the circumstances to assess his ability to continue driving.
Fleming changed his mind and agreed to perform the tests. He stumbled as he exited the car and then leaned on it for balance.
Three tests were performed: the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus, Walk and Turn and the One Leg Stand. Fleming’s performance in the tests signaled six of six clues, six of eight clues and two of four clues respectively. More clues signifies a higher likelihood the test taker is intoxicated or otherwise impaired.
Fleming was placed in handcuffs and made to perform a breathalyzer test, which gave a reading of .118. He was then transported to the Juneau County Jail.