Monday, April 23, 2018
Public safety

Gary Kompothecras, of 1-800-Ask-Gary, faces DUI charge in Manatee

Dr. Gary Kompothecras, a wealthy Sarasota chiropractor known for his medical referral service 1-800-ASK-GARY, was arrested Thursday on a charge of DUI after a deputy clocked him driving more than 100 mph, according to the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office.

With his "1-800-ASK-GARY" signs and billboards, Kompothecras is to the chiropractic industry what Orlando lawyer John Morgan is to the legal profession, using marketing to attract clients and build their business model.

His son, Alex Kompothecras, also appeared on the MTV reality show Siesta Key.

RELATED: What MTV’s ‘Siesta Key’ has to do with 1-800-Ask-Gary

The incident took place at about 1:40 a.m., Kompothecras, 57, was driving south on Interstate 75 on the JD Young Bridge in a silver Porsche, according to arrest records.

A deputy reported seeing the Porsche speeding by and estimated it was travelling about 100 mph. The deputy confirmed that speed using radar, according to arrest records.

The deputy pulled the Porsche over. Kompothecras said he had some wine at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Tampa and left after "having some type of issue with his wife," according to arrest records.

The deputy asked Kompothecras to perform a series of field sobriety exercises. "He agreed to the exercises but would state numerous times that he had an issue with his feet that affected his balance," the arrest record read.

The deputy said Kompothecras appeared visibly impaired and refused to do the one-leg test, according to arrest records.

"I then explained and demonstrated the Romberg Alphabet," the arrest report said. "The defendant stated that he had a PhD and knew the alphabet."

However, the deputy wrote: " The defendant opened his eyes during the exercise and could not complete reciting the alphabet despite numerous attempts."

Kompothecras has a long political history, mostly with Republicans. He also has had a long political alliance with U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, D-St. Petersburg, and provided a jet for Crist’s second campaign for governor in 2014.

Over the past decade, Kompothecras has contributed $235,000 to the Republican Party of Florida and to state and local candidates. He has also been a generous contributor to candidates for President and Congress, including a $25,000 check to the Donald Trump campaign in 2016 and to candidates and members of Congress, from hometown U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan in Sarasota to Darrell Issa in California.

Kompothecras is a former member of a local airport authority board in Sarasota and Manatee counties.

He was arrested and taken to the Manatee County jail, where he was freed later Thursday after posting $500 bail.

Staff writer Steve Bousquet contributed to this report.

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