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Good morning, Florida. One of your officers, Michael Szeliga of the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Department to be exact, reportedly showed up drunk to accept an award from Mothers Against Drunk Driving in Fort Lauderdale. The nature of this award? Dude had just landed more than 100 DUI arrests, before presumably taking a long hot bath in a pool of irony.
"It was wrong, and again, one of the most ridiculous things I’ve heard of," Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri told Raw Story. "When I first heard about it, that was [what] my reaction was. ‘Come on, you’ve got to be kidding me. Really?’" Yes. Really. According to Raw Story’s account, it "is assumed" that the officer drove himself to the conference, though Szeliga denies this and claims he just had "one or two drinks" before attempting to accept the award.
One supervisor, who reportedly "encountered" Szeliga at the conference before the award was to be given, described the officer as "wasted" and ultimately decided to send him back to his hotel room. After being reprimanded and given one day of paid suspension (how nice!), Szeliga was "forced" to write an apology letter to various supervisors before being allowed to fulfill his dream of becoming a detective in the sheriff’s Crimes Against Children unit.