Police Officer Too Drunk to Accept Award at Mothers Against Drunk Driving Event

drunken manFile under: We couldn't make this up if we tried! A Florida police officer showed up totally plastered ... to the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) conference where he was supposed to receive an award. For making DUI arrests. 

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Needless to say, Officer Michael Szeliga of the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Department did not collect his award.

"It was wrong, and again, one of the most ridiculous things I’ve heard of," Pinellas County sheriff Bob Gualtieri said -- and we have to agree. "When I first heard about it, that was [what] my reaction was: 'Come on, you’ve got to be kidding me. Really?'"

We're with you, Sheriff Gualtieri!

Uh ... so let's recap the key points. First, Szeliga packed a bottle of Jameson Irish Whiskey into his patrol car before heading down to the drunk-driving conference in Fort Lauderdale. Then, on the first day of the conference, he ducked out after the morning session in order to have a few drinks by the pool and play cornhole. At one point he was spotted in his boxers in the hotel hallway (but, to be fair, a fire alarm had gone off). Later that night, he was supposed to attend a banquet and collect his award (for having made 100 DUI arrests), but his supervisors deemed him too wasted to even attend the banquet.

Ugh. The whole thing is truly embarrassing. At least we can be glad that Szeliga insists he didn't drive drunk during the weekend at all. Sheesh!

As a punishment for his trashy behavior, Szeliga was reprimanded and given one day of paid suspension (which kind of sounds like an extra vacay day, but whatever). He was also required to write a letter of apology to his supervisors for being "belligerent." However, his pending promotion to detective was not affected -- he now works as a detective in the sheriff’s crimes against children unit.

More from The Stir: 19 Celebrities Who Died Of Alcohol & Drug Overdoses (PHOTOS)

Hmm. Maybe a change of focus was just what this guy needed. Let's hope he stays sober and focuses on being the vigilant hero those children need!

 

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