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Woman sues Miami hotel in connection with traumatic brain injury

We all expect police officers to be alert and careful. Police officers are not allowed to drink alcohol while on duty so that they are ready to do their jobs if the need arises. A Seattle woman is learning just why police officers should not drink on the job after an intoxicated officer hit her with his all-terrain vehicle (ATV) while she was walking on Miami Beach.

The woman had been on the beach with a friend when an intoxicated police officer took a woman he had met at the bar for a joyride on his police ATV. The accident has kept the woman in the hospital in a serious condition because of a traumatic brain injury. The woman is suing the hotel that allegedly served the on-duty officer.

The woman's lawsuit claims that the hotel served two officers, including the one involved in the accident, alcohol while they were in uniform and on-duty. Both officers have subsequently been fired by the police department. The officer involved in the accident was arrested and charged with a DUI and reckless driving.

The woman's filings assert that the officer was using the ATV negligently and that the hotel was negligent when it served him drinks. Neither the hotel nor the Fraternal Order of Police for the Miami Beach Police Department wanted to comment on the matter.

A police investigation discovered that the police officers had been drinking with a bachelorette party at the hotel. One officer then decided to take one of the women on his police ATV for a drive on Miami Beach. Other sources report that the officer's blood-alcohol level was above the legal limit five hours before the accident happened.

Source: NBC Miami, "Woman Files Lawsuit in Cop ATV Crash," Ari Odzer and Brian Hamacher, 28 July 2011

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