LARGO — Persistence pays off in many avenues of life. Fleeing a police officer while riding a motorcycle is not one of them.
Michael Hunt, a 38-year-old resident of Brandon, learned that lesson the hard way early Wednesday morning, when he was arrested on charges of felony DUI, eluding police, possession of marijuana, resisting an officer, driving with a suspended license and leaving the scene of a crash involving property damage, according to Largo police.
Here's what police said happened:
Largo police Officer Kreig Lake saw Hunt wipe out on his motorcycle on East Bay Drive about 1:45 a.m. Hunt picked up the motorcycle and tried to get it running, but paused and briefly conversed with Lake after the officer approached him in his cruiser with the overhead lights flashing.
Once Lake asked for Hunt's driver's license, however, Hunt "quickly crank[ed] the motorcycle and sped away driving on the wrong side of the roadway," according to Lake's report on the incident. Hunt "almost went head on with an oncoming vehicle" and "had to swerve drastically to avoid collision," Lake wrote in his report.
Hunt then abandoned the bike and fled on foot. He was tracked and apprehended with the help of Fritz, a Largo police dog. Once he was caught, police said, Hunt admitted to drinking "at least six bottles" of Bud Light Platinum, a brand of beer marketed for its high alcohol content.
During the arrest Fritz bit Hunt, who was transported to the hospital for treatment before being booked into the Pinellas County jail. He was released Wednesday on a total bond of $15,800.
Peter Jamison can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (727) 445-4157.