Officers from the Covington Police Department were on patrol late Wednesday evening when they got behind a white Ford F-150 on U.S. Highway 278 and Emory Street. The officers noticed the driver of the vehicle crossing the center lane on several occasions and driving erratically.
The officers continued to follow the driver, later identified as Dwuain Key, and watched as he stopped for a red light in the middle of the intersection. When the light turned green and Key began to drive again, officers activated their emergency equipment and attempted to stop Key but, according to reports, he continued to drive until he reached the intersection of Emory and Washington Street where he finally came to a stop, roughly 15-feet into the intersection and past the stop bar on the road.
Officers approached Key's vehicle. At first Key sat in his vehicle and stared straight ahead until officers tapped the window. When he rolled the window down the officer reportedly noticed a strong smell of alcohol coming from Key and also noticed that Key's eyes were blood shot and glassy.
The officer attempted to speak with Key, but he seemed not to be paying any attention, according to reports. He allegedly placed his hands on the steering wheel and began staring at the red light, which made the officer believe Key was about to drive off. The officer ordered Key to turn the ignition off and exit the vehicle.
When Key exited the vehicle, however, the officer noticed that he was unsteady on his feet and was using the vehicle's door for balance. When asked if he had been drinking that night, Key allegedly told the officer he had been drinking earlier.
As the officer and Key walked to the back of the vehicle Key reportedly began taking his coat off. When asked why, he allegedly told the officer he was hot, though the report indicates it was approximately 40 degrees outside at the time. The officer requested backup due to Key's odd behavior, and while waiting for other officers to arrive, he asked Key if he would perform sobriety tests and he agreed to do so.
During the tests the officer's backup unit arrived and he advised the other officer where to park. When the officer turned back to Key, he noticed the man was gone. The officer looked to his right and reportedly saw Key running toward the wood line at which time the officers gave chase.
Key was caught shortly after the chase began and was "escorted to the ground" by the officers where he was placed in handcuffs. The officers asked Key why he ran and the man reportedly told them he ran because he "had to go poop" and that is where he was running off to. Key also allegedly told officers that he no longer had to go because he "pooped his pants."
Key was escorted out of the woods and placed on the curb at the Corner Pantry where officers read him his rights. He refused to continue with sobriety testing and was arrested and transported to the Newton County Detention Center where he was charged with DUI less safe and fleeing to elude.