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Gainesville police arrested a man late Saturday for driving under the influence and spitting on a nurse who was treating him.

James Rogers, 33, was driving while allegedly under the influence of alcohol at around 11:30 p.m. According to the arrest report, a GPD officer stopped Rogers’ car because he was driving at night with no headlights. Rogers was also drifting and hitting his brakes for no apparent reason.

Instead of pulling into nearby parking lots, the officer noted that Rogers stopped his car in the road and drove touching the curb. He called for another officer after noting the smell of alcohol and Rogers’ slow and lethargic movements, bloodshot watery eyes, slurred speech and drooling.



When the arresting officer arrived at NW 13th Street, Rogers was passed out behind the wheel. According to the report, the keys were still in the ignition and the engine was running.

Rogers woke up after the officer knocked on the passenger window a few times and turned down the music before rolling the window down.

He reportedly stated his coach had given him some pills to keep him awake. Rogers also had a swollen lip, which he said came from playing football.

He initially refused to get out of the car but was allegedly disorientated when he finally did. According to the report, Rogers performed poorly on the field sobriety tests and screamed obscenities at the officer.

Rogers also allegedly took his shirt off, acting like he was going to fight the officers, and began doing push-ups to “intimidate” them, according to the report.

The officer placed Rogers under arrest for driving under the influence. Rogers continued to be verbally aggressive, allegedly shouting racial slurs and making sexual comments.

At the Alachua County Jail, Rogers refused to take a breath test. The officer then took him to North Florida Regional Medical Center to get medical clearance for Rogers’ swollen lip.

According to the report, a doctor ordered a CT scan of Rogers’ face and head. While on the CT table, Rogers spit on the arm of a nurse who was treating him. The arresting officer put a surgical mask over Rogers’ mouth to prevent him from spitting on staff again.

A blood test done at the hospital confirmed that Rogers’ blood alcohol content level was too high for him to be driving.

GPD charged Rogers with driving under the influence and battery of an emergency medical care provider. According to jail records, Rogers’ bail is set at $10,000. 

Follow Jessica Curbelo on Twitter @jesscurbelo and contact her at [email protected].