Pinellas Sheriff’s Lieutenant Accused of DUI, Fired
She was fired immediately after her arrest, which is policy in the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office.
PINELLAS COUNTY – A lieutenant in the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office was fired this morning (March 18) after she was arrested and accused of drunken driving.
Christi Ruhtz, 41, was charged with one count of driving under the influence. Ruhtz had worked for the sheriff’s office since Dec. 21, 1998. At the time of her termination she was in the public records processing unit. Firing after an arrest is sheriff’s policy.
Deputies said that Ruhtz refused to submit a breath sample for the criminal investigation. Ruhtz was required to submit to an administrative breath sample because of her employment with the Sheriff’s Office. That sample indicated she had a blood alcohol content of 0.14/0.13. In Florida, someone is presumed to be impaired if they have a BAC of 0.08 or above.
Deputies said they were called about 1:49 a.m. this morning by a resident complaining about a disturbance caused by a vehicle honking its horn in the neighborhood. When deputies arrived, they saw a vehicle being driven in with the horn honking. Deputies stopped the vehicle and found Ruhtz to be the only one inside.
Ruhtz showed signs of impairment with bloodshot, glassy and watery eyes, and a distinct odor of an alcoholic beverage coming from her mouth, deputies said. Ruhtz agreed to perform field sobriety tests, but performed poorly on them.
Pinellas Sheriff | Deputy Fired | Crime | DUI | Drunken Driving | Arrests | Tampabay News
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