BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A Baltimore City Police officer has been terminated after being found in his patrol car passed out behind the wheel, apparently intoxicated, according to police.
He has now been charged with a DUI.
Officer Aaron Heilman was found Tuesday afternoon, at around 1:40 p.m., when Southern District officers were called to the 700 block of Washington Blvd to check on an officer, Heilman, slumped over behind the wheel of his marked patrol vehicle that was running.
A witness said he was working in Pigtown when he noticed the emergency lights were activated. But the officer hadn’t moved for at least 20 minutes.
“…I moved around to the drivers’ side window, tapped on it, no response. So then I knocked even harder thinking something was wrong and as I knocked on it harder he woke up and was kind of disoriented a little bit,” the person who found him said.
During a brief interaction along Washington Blvd. near MLK, he said something was off.
“I said ‘Are you ok?’ He said a little bit slurred, ‘Yes I am ok,’ And I at that point got a whiff of alcohol, what I thought was alcohol,” The witness said.
The witness said police eventually pulled up to help the officer. They took the keys, and a female officer carried away what appeared to be his belt and gun.
“And then they escorted him out and he was having a tough time walking. Had an officer on each side that were helping him walk,” The witness said.
Officer Heilman was read his DR-15 rights and submitted to a breathalyzer.
His results revealed a .22 BAC, which is nearly three times the legal limit.
He was suspended immediately.
Baltimore City Police said after being off for two days, the officer was just three hours into his shift. The Department said Heilman was a new hire who had been on the job for a few months.
Interim Commissioner Tuggle terminated him on October 3.
“I looked at the totality of the circumstances involved in this case and I made the decision to terminate the officer immediately,” Tuggle said. “His actions represented a safety issue for himself and the community. I simply won’t tolerate it,”
This story is developing.