Police officer busted on DUI charge
His assigned car had been missing when it was seen near a bar
A marked police vehicle was gone for about 16 hours before it was returned by a police officer who was allegedly drunk.
Honolulu police officer James Urban, 31, was arrested and charged with driving under the influence at 2:19 a.m. April 29 after he returned the police vehicle to the Kapolei Police Station.
A police report on the incident gave the following account:
About 10 a.m. the previous day, Urban checked the vehicle out. By midnight, the vehicle was not returned. Attempts to contact Urban through his listed phone lines were futile because his contact information had changed.
Officers went to Urban's home to speak with his wife, who said Urban didn't return home from work. But about 12:30 a.m. , a Kalihi police officer spotted the car unattended, unlocked and parked on Kohou Street near Leslie's Place.
When the officer discovered that the driver was not in the bar, he left thinking it was part of an undercover operation. When the officer returned after being informed of the missing vehicle, the car was gone.
About 1:45 a.m., a beat officer saw Urban driving the car in the Iroquois Point housing area and told him to return to the station.
Urban pulled into the Kapolei station about 2:15 a.m., with a police sergeant and an officer waiting for him.
"Jimmy, where you've been?" asked Sgt. Lloyd Keliinui. "I was waiting for this white car."
Keliinui said Urban gave no response, but smelled of alcohol and had red eyes, the report said.
Urban also was carrying a half-used roll of paper towels under his right arm, appeared unsteady on his feet and grinned at the sergeant. When he was asked whether he had been drinking, Urban smiled and said, "Yeah."
Police attempted to give Urban a field sobriety test, but he could not focus on the officer's finger, shook his head and said, "I can't do this," the report said.
Police arrested Urban, who said, "You have to do what you have to do." Urban was not on duty when he took the marked vehicle, and was dressed in a black polo shirt, khaki pants and black boots.
The report indicated Urban was cooperative, and "almost jovial for a while as we walked toward the desk, putting his arms around both Sgt. Keliinui and me," said officer John Dorsey.
"You know I'm going to refuse," Urban reportedly said before being asked to be tested for his blood-alcohol content. The arresting officers told him they would still go through the appropriate steps.
Urban then talked about resigning from the police department and moving back home to the mainland, the report said. Urban then refused to take any test and turned in his driver's license.
This is the second time Urban has been arrested on charges related to drinking and driving. In December 2006, he was convicted of drunken driving and leaving the scene of an accident involving damage to a vehicle or property. He was sentenced to two days in jail, and his driver's license was suspended for 90 days.
Urban has been placed on paid leave since the recent arrest, said police spokesman Maj. Frank Fujii. Fujii declined further comment on Urban's case, citing the department's ongoing internal investigation.