CHESTER TOWNSHIP, Ohio -- Willoughby-Eastlake Schools Superintendent Steve Thompson told Chester Township officers he only had a couple of beers before he was pulled over following a traffic crash early Saturday morning.
The officer told him his speech was slurred, according to dash camera video of Thompson’s arrest.
Moments after the stop, Thompson was asked to get out of his vehicle and take a number of field sobriety tests. When the tests were completed, Thompson was arrested.
“I am not going to fight,” Thompson told the officers as he was handcuffed.
While being led to the cruiser, he asked officers if he could just go home, but officers told him they have strict policies on OVI cases and had to arrest him.
Chester Township police charged the 48-year-old superintendent with three misdemeanors, including OVI.
On Friday, he appeared in Chardon Municipal Court and pleaded not guilty to those charges.
“I operated a motor vehicles when I should not have,” Thompson said after the brief hearing. “I sincerely apologize for my lapse in judgment.”
He also said he knows students look at him as a role model and that he does not believe he was one last weekend.
“I would like to apologize to my family, friends, and the entire community and everyone who placed their trust in me last weekend,” Thompson said. “I made a significant mistake, one for which I am truly sorry.”
Thompson said he plans to make a donation to the local chapter of Students Against Drunk Drivers to further support alcohol awareness.
Thompson's attorney told FOX 8 that his client will most likely plead guilty to the charge during the next court hearing.
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