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Accused drunk driver crashes into Brevard deputy's car

Suspect had to be pulled out of truck after crash, deputies say

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PORT ST. JOHN, Fla. – A man accused of driving drunk crashed into a Brevard County Sheriff's Office patrol car after he fell asleep at a stoplight, deputies said.

News 6 partner Florida Today reported that Paulino Sanchez-Lara, 24, of the 200 block of Knox McRae Drive, Titusville, had stopped his black Chevrolet pickup on U.S. 1 at Fay Boulevard in the Port St. John area about 3:30 a.m. Tuesday, according to his arrest affidavit.

[READ: Man kills pedestrian in DUI crash then continues drinking, police say]

Another motorist called 911 after the pickup sat at the light through several cycles of red and green.

A deputy pulled up behind the pickup and attempted to wake Sanchez-Lara by pounding on the window several times and yelling. The driver woke up, took his foot off the brake and the pickup rolled into the intersection, the affidavit states.

The deputy hopped back into his patrol car and followed the pickup. Sanchez-Lara put the pickup into reverse and rammed the front passenger side of the patrol car, tearing off the bumper, the Sheriff's Office said. The pickup stopped when it struck a stop sign in the median, according to the affidavit.

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The motorist would not step out of the pickup, the affidavit states. The deputy smashed the driver's side window and pulled Sanchez-Lara out, he said. 

Blood-alcohol content results for Sanchez-Lara were 0.21 and 0.20, both more than twice the state's legal limit of 0.08, the affidavit states. He was also unsteady on his feet and failed most of the roadside sobriety exercises, deputies said.

Sanchez-Lara was charged with driving under the influence, DUI with property damage, resisting arrest without violence and driving without ever having a license. He was being held at the Brevard County Jail Thursday in lieu of a $2,500 bail bond.