A police officer who has been with the department for more than 10 years was arrested near the Stockyards Sunday night on suspicion of driving his motorcycle while intoxicated, according to a news release on Monday.
Officers responded to a call at 9:30 p.m. Sunday about a possible DWI at 1000 N.E. 28th St. They found Stephen Toothman, 38, operating a 2015 Harley-Davidson, according to the news release and a police incident report.
Toothman was placed on restricted duty, and his service weapon and badge were confiscated, the news release said. He will not be able to act in any capacity as an officer until the investigation is completed.
Toothman was assigned to the North Patrol division, which has its office in the area. He was commissioned with the department in May 2004, according to police.
A police spokesman declined to answer any questions, such as what prompted the 911 call.
This is the first arrest of a police officer suspected of DWI under new Police Chief Joel Fitzgerald, who took office Oct. 19.
The previous chief, Jeff Halstead, grappled with troubling trend of officer DWIs. After more than a dozen arrests dating back to 2008, on Jan. 1, 2013, Halstead began keeping a tally board outside his office marking the number of days since the last arrest. There were none until Dec. 1, 2014, when officer Carl Duque was arrested. Duque was fired in May.
One former officer, Jesus Cisneros, is serving a 20-year prison sentence for a wreck in his city-owned SUV that killed a young mother.
Halstead implemented mandatory alcohol awareness training and a zero-tolerance policy that called for an officer to be fired if a DWI accusation is upheld after investigation by the Internal Affairs Division.
Among those fired was Paul Henderson, Halstead’s chief of staff and a former department spokesman, in May 2013.
This report includes information from Star-Telegram archives.