Police: Motorist runs off road in front of officer

A Bedford man was arrested on two counts of operating while intoxicated after his vehicle ran off the roadway in front of a Columbus police officer.

Michael B. Heatley, 54, is being held in the Bartholomew County Jail on preliminary charges of operating a vehicle with a blood-alcohol content greater than .15 percent and operating a vehicle while intoxicated with a previous conviction, said Sgt. Matt Harris, Columbus police spokesman.

At about 11:30 p.m. Wednesday, officer Ivan Shultz was on a traffic stop with another vehicle on Jonesville Road when he saw Heatley’s car running off the right side of the roadway onto the grass, Harris said.

The vehicle nearly crashed before it came back on the pavement just before Shultz stopped Heatley, Harris said.

Police said Heatley’s speech was slurred and his eyes were bloodshot and glassy, Harris said. Heatley failed several roadside sobriety checks and was transported to the police department for a breath test, where he registered .199 percent blood-alcohol content, more than double the legal limit, Harris said.

Heatley is being held in jail in lieu of $12,500 bond, jail officials said.

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Julie McClure is assistant managing editor of The Republic. She can be reached at jmcclure@therepublic.com or (812) 379-5631.