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Sunday, December 10, 2023

Camaro-driving Leesburg man charged with DUI

Misael Anibal Merced
Misael Anibal Merced

A Leesburg man who refused to provide a breath sample for testing was charged with DUI after being pulled over early Thursday.

At around 12:37 a.m., an officer saw a white Chevrolet Camaro enter the intersection of North 14th Street and Griffin Road during a red light.  The vehicle then backed up behind the stop bar and waited for the light to turn green, according to an arrest report from the Leesburg Police Department.

The officer initiated a traffic stop and spoke with the driver, 27-year-old Misael Anibal Merced, and immediately noticed his eyes were bloodshot and glassy. Before the officer could voice his suspicions, Merced said, “I haven’t been drinking. We can do a breathalyzer,” the report said.

The officer instead asked Merced to perform field sobriety exercises. Due to his performance during the exercises, Merced was placed under arrest and taken to adult booking for further investigation. He was given a second opportunity to perform field sobriety exercises, which he denied, according to the report.

When asked to provide a breath sample, Merced remained silent. He was moved to the breath test room and asked if he still refused to provide a breath sample. In response, Merced used his middle finger to flick off the Intoxilyzer, the device used to test a person’s breath, the report said.

The New York native was ultimately charged with DUI and issued two citations for violation of a traffic control device. He was transported to the Lake County Jail with bond set at $1,000.

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