TALLAHASSEE — A Southwest Florida lawmaker who advocated for a new state law to drug test all elected officials was arrested early Monday and accused of drunken driving, Tallahassee Police Department officials say.
State Rep. Dane Eagle, 30, R-Cape Coral, was arrested around 2 a.m. after hitting a curb and running a red light near the campus of Florida State University, police say.
Tallahassee police say Eagle's vehicle was first noticed after leaving a Taco Bell near the university campus.
"When the defendant exited, he stumbled to his left and fell against the rear passenger door of his vehicle," the police report said.
Eagle told the officer he hadn't been drinking.
He said the "strong odor of alcoholic beverages" noticed by the officer was because he had been driving around friends who were at a bar, according to the report.
After being pulled over, Eagle refused to perform a field sobriety test, telling the officer he was "good to get home."
In a statement today, Eagle's office said there are additional facts not yet public.
"While there are some decisions that I would have made differently, I do not believe there is a complete and accurate picture of the events," wrote Eagle, whose attorney advised him not to discuss the arrest beyond his statement.
House Speaker Will Weatherford, R-Wesley Chapel, called the arrest an "unfortunate situation."
Eagle was on the House floor today voting as part of Florida's 60-day legislative session.
Earlier this year, he filed legislation (HB 1435) that would require drug testing of elected officials. The bill didn't receive a committee hearing, so it won't pass this legislative session.
Eagle had wanted to require public officers to be drug tested within 60 days of taking office or being re-elected. If that test came back positive, the person would be referred to a treatment program or resign if they refused to take the drug test.
Eagle's proposal came three months after then- U.S. Rep. Trey Radel, R-Fort Myers, pleaded guilty to a possession of cocaine charge. He resigned in January after repeated calls for him to step down.
Radel's drug charges prompted Eagle to file the bill. A special election to replace Radel was held Tuesday, the day after Eagle landed in jail.
Eagle was first elected to the House in 2012. He is a licensed real estate broker.
The Leon County Sheriff's Office website didn't post Eagle's arrest mug shot immediately. But after various media outlets - including the Scripps/Tribune Capital Bureau - filed for its release under the state's public records law, it was released today around 4 p.m.