The squirrel did it — that’s what a 23-year-old Fleming Island man told a deputy who pulled him over Saturday night for driving erratically on U.S. 17, according to the Clay County Sheriff’s Office.
But after further investigation, and the safe securing of a live squirrel, Warren Thomas Michael III was arrested on charges of driving under the influence and driving without a seat belt.
Authorities were called in after a driver said a silver pickup with one headlight had almost hit his vehicle near Black Creek, according to the arrest report. A deputy saw the truck on Pine Avenue and watched as it swerved into the grass, weaved back and forth over the center line and almost hit an oncoming car.
When the deputy stopped the truck on Harvest Bend Drive, the driver said he “had a squirrel eating him” and pointed to the small animal wrapped in his shirt, according to the report.
Read the arrest report from the Clay County Sheriff's Office
Michael underwent a field sobriety test and was arrested after his girlfriend came by to get the truck and squirrel, the Sheriff’s Office said. The arrest report indicates two breathalyzer samples taken on Michael read .145 and .156, both over Florida’s legal limit to drive of .08.
He has since been released on bail.
Clay County court records indicate he also was cited July 16 for unknowingly operating a vehicle with a suspended driver’s license.