Alleged drunk driver tussles with an off-duty cop on road

Contributed Photo/Courtesy GCSO: Levi Smth, 30, was booked into jail on a DUI charge after allegedly fighting with an off-duty officer in the middle of the road.

By Jon Johnson

GRAHAM COUNTY – An allegedly intoxicated driver was booked into the Graham County Adult Detention Facility on Feb. 10 after reportedly fighting with an off-duty Willcox police officer. 

Levi Smith, 30, was arrested and booked into jail on a DUI charge. A possible additional charge of resisting arrest was sent to the Graham County Attorney’s Office for review.  

According to a Graham County Sheriff’s Office report, an off-duty Willcox police officer reportedly was driving home on Fort Grant Road in a green, F-150 pickup truck with his wife when he noticed a car parked in the middle of the roadway. 

Upon inspection, the officer located Smith behind the wheel and said he appeared intoxicated. The officer said he identified himself with his badge and had Smith exit the vehicle. He then asked Smith to sit down while his wife called 9-1-1, according to his statements to a Graham County Sheriff’s deputy. 

However, the Willcox officer said Smith refused to sit and attempted to get back into his car and drive away. The officer then got into Smith’s vehicle and turned the ignition to the off position. Upon his exit, he said he and Smith began “fighting”. The officer reported taking Smith to the ground and advising him to stop resisting. At that point, the officer said Smith pushed him back, so the officer backed away and drew his firearm. 

However, Smith reportedly continued to come toward the officer, who then holstered his firearm and pushed Smith to the ground, and stayed on top of him until other Willcox officers arrived. When Graham County Sheriff’s deputies arrived, Smith was in custody in a Willcox patrol vehicle. While the area is technically in Graham County, it is on the other side of Mount Graham and is much closer to Willcox. 

The officer suffered scrapes and scratches to his hands and knees but no other visible injuries. 

When questioned by a deputy, Smith allegedly said he was trying to make his way back home from Tucson and he pulled over because his car was making “funny noises.” He said he wasn’t sure how the situation escalated but that he was perhaps a little “delirious” due to hiking that day.

When asked why he resisted the Willcox officer Smith allegedly said “I don’t know, I just don’t like being arrested.”

The deputy noted that Smith appeared intoxicated while talking with him and that his speech was slurred and he was having a hard time keeping his balance. 

After failing field sobriety tests, the deputy asked Smith what he was under the influence of and Smith allegedly replied that he was “just high on life man.”

His blood was then taken for testing purposes and he was booked into jail without further incident.