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DUI suspect jailed after threatening to kill women at local restaurant

Thomas Alan Butzen
Thomas Alan Butzen

A Wildwood man was arrested May 6 after allegedly threatening two women at the Legends Bar and Grill in Fruitland Park.

The women had noticed a man, later identified as 62-year-old Thomas Alan Butzen, passed out in a car in the restaurant’s parking lot. The women told the bar owner about the man and accompanied him out to Butzen’s car. Butzen said he was going to kill the woman. The owner called the police who arrived a little after 11 p.m. The Fruitland Park officers made contact with Butzen who had a strong odor of alcohol on his breath. He was sweating, slurred his words and had a blank stare according to the police report. He had an open container of an alcoholic beverage in the driver’s side cup container.

When the officers asked Butzen to exit the car and perform standardized field sobriety exercises, he refused. Hhe had to be removed from the car. Two officers were able to get him out of the car and place him on the ground where they were eventually able to handcuff him. Butzen was transported to the Lake County Jail where he refused to provide a breath sample.

He told officers that he had started drinking at 8 a.m. and drank all day long. When asked about the whiskey in his car he claimed it was scotch. When asked when he stopped drinking Butzen replied “I don’t stop.” When asked how much he had to drink he replied, “Doesn’t matter,” according to the arrest report.

Butzen was charged with a third-degree felony DUI as this was his fourth DUI arrest. He was also charged with refusal to provide breath samples , resisting arrest, two counts of disturbing the peace, and refusal to sign a citation. Bond was set at $13,500.

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