SALT LAKE CITY — A Sandy man was charged Friday with crashing his car, having a blood alcohol content more than three times the legal limit and then trying to bribe an officer to let him go.
Courtney Preston Struve, 71, is charged in 3rd District Court with bribery, a second-degree felony; DUI, a third-degree felony; being an alcohol-restricted driver, a class B misdemeanor; and driving on a denied license, a class C misdemeanor.
On Aug. 26, Struve was spotted by another motorist sitting in his stopped car in the middle lane near 10550 South and 1300 East. There was damage to Struve's car, but he did not respond to the other motorist checking on him, according to charging documents.
"Struve then revved his engine, exited the Lexus, and walked away," the charges state.
The Lexus was in drive or neutral, however, and began rolling when Struve got out, forcing the other man to jump in and stop it, police say.
Officers found Struve at a nearby McDonald's and noted his speech was slurred, his eyes were red and he stumbled as he walked, the charges state. He allegedly told the officer that he had hit a concrete barrier and then tried to drive home.
"Struve made inconsistent statements that after the crash he drank a pint of vodka and then changed his story and said that he drank the vodka at the McDonald's after his vehicle had stalled," the charges state.
Struve failed a field sobriety tests, and tried to explain to the officer during the walk and turn test that he could not do it "even if he was sober," according to court documents.2 comments on this story
When Struve was given an Intoxilyzer test, he could not provide a sufficient sample, but still registered a .263 blood alcohol content — more than three times the legal limit — "despite being an insufficient sample," charging documents state.
While police were fingerprinting Struve, he said, "I'm going to be paying $5,000 in lawyer fees. What if you rip up the papers and I'll pay you $5,000?" according to the charges
In August, Struve was charged with DUI in Sandy Justice Court. That case is ongoing. He was convicted of DUI in 2013 and 2007, according to court records.