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Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Grieving Orlando man charged with DUI after leaving hotel

Anthony Deno Bihms
Anthony Deno Bihms

An Orlando man mourning the loss of a family member was charged with DUI after being pulled over in Leesburg on Sunday night.

Between 8:30 and 9 p.m., Leesburg police received a report of a suicidal person at the Best Western Hotel, 1321 N. 14th St. The caller said 65-year-old Anthony Bihms got into his vehicle and was driving south on 14th Street, according to the police report.

An officer observed Bihms at a stop light at the intersection of 14th and Sumter streets and initiated a traffic stop to check on his well-being. Bihms immediately got out of the vehicle and approached the officer crying, asking what he did. The officer immediately noticed the smell of alcohol on Bihms’ breath. His eyes were bloodshot and watery, the report said.

After being read his Miranda warning, Bihms told the officer he is dealing with a loss in the family and wants his family to leave him alone. He said he had two drinks at the bar next to the hotel. The officer observed a 23.5-ounce container of Mikes Hard Lemonade in the truck’s cupholder. The alcoholic beverage was cold and half empty, according to the report.

Bihms told the officer he was not drunk and asked to perform field sobriety exercises, which he failed. He was taken to the Leesburg police station, where he provided two breath samples that came back with readings of .127 and .116. Bihms was placed under arrest and taken to the Lake County Jail, where he was released early Monday on $1,000 bond. He is scheduled to appear in Lake County Court on Aug. 30.

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