Orlando officer was three times over legal limit during DUI arrest, police say

Officer Samuel Cunningham placed on paid leave

EDGEWOOD, Fla. – An Orlando police officer was three times over the legal limit, stumbling and driving erratically when he was arrested on a DUI charge Friday night while he was off-duty, authorities said.

Edgewood police arrested Orlando police Officer Samuel Cunningham around 11:45 p.m. Cunningham was seen driving his truck into bushes, driving on the wrong side of the road and driving erratically, according to the arrest affidavit.

When officers pulled Cunningham over, he had a difficult time getting out of his truck, which resulted in him stumbling and falling face first into the grass, the report said. He was unable to stand on his own without holding onto his truck for support, according to authorities.

Police said Cunningham handed over his credit card when he was asked for his driver's license. Officers noted in the report that Cunningham's eyes were bloodshot and he smelled of alcohol.

He refused to perform a field sobriety test but submitted to a breath test, which resulted in a BAC of .253 at 12:56 a.m. and .245 at 12:59 a.m., the report said. He was then taken to the Orange County Jail on a DUI charge.

A spokeswoman from the Orlando Police Department said Cunningham has been relieved of law enforcement duties and placed on paid administrative leave while an internal investigation is conducted.

The internal investigation is open but on hold until the criminal proceedings are completed, according to a news release.

Cunningham has worked for OPD since September 1995.