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An evening of fishing — and alleged beer drinking — on the Annisquam River on Friday night ended with a Florida man jumping into the water in an attempt to flee from police and escape drunken driving charges.
It would end up being the seventh time Robert C. Doyle, 58, of 3813 Orangepoint Road, Valrico, Fla., was charged with drunken driving in the state of Massachusetts, police said.
When police first found Doyle around 10:30 p.m. on Friday, they say he was sleeping on the deck of his boat, his anchor up and Budweiser beer bottles scattered around him.
He didn't want to be bothered, and loudly let both the police and the Coast Guard know it, according to the police report.
Because he appeared heavily intoxicated, Patrolman Jeremiah Nicastro ignored Doyle's demands to leave him alone and took him into custody. Doyle was brought on board the harbormaster's boat for a ride to the Gloucester Marina, where police patrol cars were waiting to take him to the station.
But Doyle apparently had other ideas.
Just before arriving at the marina, Nicastro says Doyle pushed him aside, ran toward the bow of the boat, and jumped overboard. He was not handcuffed at the time.
Once in the water, Doyle started swimming away, all the while swearing at the police and yelling at them to "leave him alone," according to Nicastro's report.
It took two boats, and four people, to corner Doyle and pull him from the water.
Nicastro said Doyle was very drunk, slurring his speech and falling over when he tried to stand.
When asked before his arrest whether he had been drinking alcohol, Nicastro says Doyle laughed and told him: "Of course I have been drinking."
Police were first called by the Coast Guard, which had received a report from a Gloucester resident that a boat had run aground on a mud flat in the river. When the Coast Guard first arrived, Doyle was unruly and uncooperative, so they called police.
By the time police got there, walking through the mud and water to reach his boat, Doyle had fallen asleep on the deck.
Once on shore, Doyle was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest, as well as driving a boat while under the influence of alcohol, subsequent offense, which, under the law, is the same as driving a car while under the influence of alcohol. Police say Doyle has been charged with drunken driving six other times in Massachusetts.
However, Doyle was too intoxicated to go through the booking process until 6:30 a.m. the next morning, according to police. The booking officer noted that even then, hours after his arrest, Doyle appeared to still be drunk.
GLOUCESTER TIMES
 
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