PG liquor board chair arrested for DUI near casino
The chairman of Prince George’s County liquor board was arrested and charged with drunken driving Thursday night after becoming involved in a fender bender outside the new MGM National Harbor Resort & Casino on its opening night.
Prince George’s County Police said Charles W. Caldwell III, 72, was charged with driving under the influence and reckless driving after failing a field sobriety test Thursday evening a stone’s throw from the new casino.
Police Cpl. Lamar Robinson told WTOP Radio that officers were responding to reports of a threecar crash outside the casino Thursday night when one officer noticed that one of the drivers involved, Mr. Caldwell, “had a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage on his body.”
Mr. Caldwell refused to submit to a Breathalyzer at the scene, but was given a field sobriety test and failed, according to police.
He subsequently was taken into custody at around 11:40 p.m., less than one hour after the new casino officially had opened its doors for the first time.
Speaking to a local Fox affiliate afterwards, Mr. Caldwell said he had consumed one or two cocktails during the grand opening event.
Age, not intoxication, resulted in Mr. Caldwell failing the field sobriety test, he told reporters.
“I’m 72 turning 73 next week, and I’m a little unsteady on my feet,” he told The Washington Post.
“This was blown out of proportion,” Mr. Caldwell told Fox5, adding “I believe they made a mistake” in reference to the officers who conducted the field sobriety test.
Mr. Caldwell said he took a Breathalyzer test upon being transferred to a police station, but that the results were “inconclusive.”
Mr. Caldwell has served as the chairman of the Board of License Commissioners for Prince George’s County since being appointed by Republican Gov. Larry Hogan in March 2015.
The five-member board, all gubernatorial appointees, are tasked with enforcing the state’s alcohol and beverage laws across Prince George’s County, which includes the newly unveiled MGM casino in Oxon Hill.