A motorist who allegedly drove erratically along South Reserve Street early Thursday morning told the police officer who stopped him to just arrest him and take him to jail.
So the officer did.
Leon Hiram Wall, 25, faces a charge of driving under the influence of alcohol. If convicted, it would be his fourth offense, which is a felony.
Calling Wall “a hazard to the community, a big hazard to the community,” Justice of the Peace Karen Orzech on Thursday set Wall’s bail at $50,000 – more than double the $20,000 requested by prosecutors.
Wall’s driving records shows DUI convictions in 2008, 2009 and 2010. His license is suspended because he’s been designated a habitual traffic offender.
“That speaks to me that there’s a real issue here with alcohol and driving, and we just can’t have you out,” Orzech said.
Wall also faces misdemeanor charges of failure to carry proof of insurance, driving while his license was suspended or revoked, and failure to obey a traffic control device.
That last charge is apparently because Wall’s car allegedly stopped a full car’s length behind the line at the red stop light at Reserve and Brooks streets shortly before 3 a.m., according to charging documents filed by Deputy Missoula County Attorney Margaret Tonon. At that point, the officer pulled him over.
Wall refused a blood test, but police obtained a search warrant and took him to St. Patrick Hospital for a blood draw, according to Tonon’s affidavit.
A fourth DUI carries a maximum penalty of 13 months in treatment and five years, suspended, in prison, along with a fine of between $1,000 and $10,000.
Orzech ordered Wall to undergo twice-daily alcohol tests if he is released.
Missoulian reporter Gwen Florio can be reached at 523-5268, email@example.com, or @CopsAndCourts.