Lake County teacher arrested on third DUI charge

Jason Gross begged troopers not to arrest him, FHP says

Published On: Feb 14 2013 11:52:52 AM EST   Updated On: Feb 14 2013 05:29:59 PM EST
ORLANDO, Fla. -

A Lake County elementary school teacher has been arrested on his third driving under the influence charge.

Jason Gross, 37, a second grade teacher at Groveland Elementary School, was pulled over by Florida Highway Patrol on University Boulevard in Orlando after he did an illegal u-turn.

Troopers said when Gross was asked for his license, he pulled out a gift card from his wallet, then a "business only" permit from DHSMV.

The trooper said he could smell alcohol inside Gross' car. Gross told the trooper he was coming back from Knight Library, where he had 5 drinks.

He also lied to troopers saying he was a high school literature teacher.

During questioning, Gross then pleaded with the trooper not to arrest him.

"I'll do anything," Gross told the trooper, according to the report. "Just please, just help me. I have two DUIs on my record."

He then offered to walk to his Altamonte Springs home or take a cab.

"I would love to call a cab and walk home," Gross said. "I don't think I did anything illegal."

Gross was arrested and taken to Orange County Jail after failing a field sobriety test. As he was being arrested he told authorities he had a drinking problem and said he had a hard life.

His first DUI arrest was in 2005, records show, before his employment with Lake County School District. School officials say Gross is awaiting trial on his second DUI charge and hasn't been convicted.

Gross has been with the Lake County School District for 5 years at several elementary schools, the most recent being Groveland Elementary, where he has been for about a year. It's not clear if he will return to his position.