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KEY WEST (CBSMiami) – Authorities have released video of the moments leading up to the DUI arrest of a Miami-Dade commissioner in Key West over the weekend.
On Saturday, Jose ‘Pepe’ Diaz was pulled over while riding his Harley Davidson motorcycle after he was clocked doing 74 mph in a 30 mph zone on South Roosevelt Boulevard near Smathers Beach.
Body cameras worn by Key West Police caught the stop and arrest on tape.
The first video shows Diaz attempting to get off his motorcycle but instead falling sideways. That’s when one of the officers stepped in and helped him prop up the bike.
“You’re going 74 in a 30 sir,” said the officer.
“I apologize sir,” responded Diaz while trying to get off his motorcycle.
A short time after, he informed police he did not have his license saying his friend had his wallet.
“All we’re trying to do is have a good time down here,” Diaz told officers.
In the second video, an officer can be heard saying, “You couldn’t even put the kick stand down on your motorcycle without it falling over. There is a very strong odor of alcohol coming off of your breath.”
The commissioner is seen putting his head down in response and folding his hands without saying a word.
In a third video, one of the officers asked, “How much have you had to drink today sir?”
Diaz responded,”I had two drinks.”
The officer asked,”What were they?”
“Uh a rum and coke and a champagne. That was it,” said Diaz. He went on to say he had those drinks three hours before.
The fourth video starts off with Diaz walking a line on the street, doing a field sobriety test which he failed.
The police report states, “When Diaz began the exercise, he missed numerous steps heel to toe, stepped off the line, and used his arms for balance.”
At one point in the fourth video, Diaz asked the officer “How’d you know I was a marine.”
The officer responded, “Because you told me a little while ago.”
Later in the video, when the officer tried to arrest Diaz, the commissioner responds “Are you serious?”
The officer asked Diaz, ” Will you submit to a lawful test of your breath..?
“No,” responded Diaz.
The officers noted that Diaz, 55, had glassy bloodshot eyes, smelled of alcohol and had difficulty with focusing his attention on answering their questions.
Diaz, who identified himself as a commissioner to the police, reportedly told them he was coming from the Casa Marina and was heading to the Marriott.
Diaz was cited for speeding and not having his license on him at the time of the stop. After refusing to submit to the breath test, Diaz was charged with driving under the influence.
He released the following statement on Sunday afternoon.
Under advice of my legal counsel, I cannot discuss details at this time. However, I look forward to resolving this matter. In the meantime, I will continue to serve my community and the residents of District 12 as I have done for the last 24 years and I humbly ask for your patience during this time.
The commissioner’s colleagues are distancing themselves from the arrest.
“That’s an issue for the commissioner and I wish him all the best and it’s an issue for him to resolved,” said county Mayor Carlos Gimenez.
But at least one of his neighbors has an opinion on it.
“I’m a little bit disappointed. He should know better,” said Norval Hildebrand.
Diaz has served as a commissioner for West Miami-Dade for 13 years and pushed a bill to make bicyclists safer on Florida streets. His next court date is in Key West on October 5th.
Outside his Sweetwater home, Diaz made a statement to reporters on Monday evening.
“I’m sorry,” he said. “I’m very sorry. This is something that I’ve learned from and is something that I will continue to learn from every day of my life.”
Diaz declined to answer reporter’s questions and did not elaborate on what he’s sorry for. Diaz complimented the professionalism of the Key West Police Officers and Monroe County Sheriff’s deputies. He also said the incident is extremely embarrassing for him and one of the worst moments in his life. He also said he expects no special treatment.
“I will go through this legal process like anybody else that’s been in this situation,” he said.