CINCINNATI - A longtime Cincinnati police officer had his police powers suspended Wednesday and is facing disciplinary action after he failed an alcohol test while on duty.
Sgt. Andre Smith, a police officer in District 3, blew a .104 on a breathalyzer device four hours into his shift Wednesday.
The legal blood alcohol limit for driving in Ohio is 0.08 and police say Sgt. Smith drove his cruiser from District 3 to the testing facility.
Smith was one of 50 police officers who were randomly selected Wednesday for a drug test as part of routine procedures, said police Capt. Paul Humphries.
Additionally, Smith was one of 10 officers from that group who also had to submit to a Breathalyzer test to determine the alcohol content in their blood.
Smith isn’t facing criminal charges at this point, but internal police disciplinary procedures are underway.
“This is an administrative investigation,” Humphries said. “He had no right of refusal, he had no right not to take the test, no (motor skills tests) were given.”
Humphries added, “This wasn’t something where we saw him acting erratically or anything, any indications whatsoever. This was truly just a random test.”
A 25-year veteran of the Cincinnati Police Department, Smith was charged with operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated in 2010 after he was stopped while off-duty. That charge later was reduced to reckless operation.
Smith has made headlines several times during the past few years.
In 1998, Smith shot an armed suspect in the leg during a traffic stop.
In May 2000, Smith accused then-Police Chief Thomas Streicher Jr. of using a racial slur during a training exercise with officers. During the exercise, Streicher asked a group of police supervisors how they would handle the situation if he called Smith the “n-word.”
Smith said Streicher used the slur to vent his anger over positions taken by the Sentinels Police Association, a group of black officers. But Streicher maintained it was done to teach officers how to deal with anger, and that he didn’t mean to offend anyone.
In November 2000, Smith was one of three officers involved in an incident that led to the police shooting death of Jeffrey Irons in Pleasant Ridge.
Irons, a homeless man suspected of shoplifting deodorant and soap at a grocery store, had an altercation with the officers and grabbed Smith’s gun, when he was shot and killed by another officer.
Copyright 2012 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
Freddy Galvis and Erik Kratz each homered off closer Aroldis Chapman in the bottom of the ninth innings Sunday, rallying the Philadelphia Phillies past the Cincinnati Reds for a stunning 3-2 victory.