A man was arrested in Jupiter on Monday after police said he drove drunk with three kids in the bed of his truck, sped away from police, hit a bicyclist and then resisted arrest, according to an arrest report.
Jupiter police said Brian Ferguson, 34, was driving with three children ranging from 9 to 16 in the bed of his truck about 5 p.m. Monday in Jupiter near U.S. 1 and A1A.
Another driver saw Ferguson driving the truck erratically in the parking lot of Brix Restaurant, 1000 N. U.S. 1, and became alarmed after she saw a boy pop his head out from the bed of the truck.
She called 911 and tried to position herself in front of the truck, but the driver of the truck got around her and traveled west on East Indiantown Road, according to the report.
When police caught up with him, they said they tried to pull him over. He slowed for a second, but took off, police said. They chased briefly, but the officer stopped because he said he was afraid the children in the back of the truck might get hurt in a police pursuit.
The officer kept his sights on where Ferguson was going, and followed him along Indiantown Road. Shortly after stopping his chase, the officer said he saw smoke and a vehicle that was not Ferguson’s with heavy damage.
The officer also saw a person on the ground next to a bicycle. A witness told police they saw a truck make a sharp turn, which caused damage to the other vehicle and caused the bicyclist to be hurt.
Around the corner, the officer saw Ferguson’s truck crashed into a fence, and three boys — ages 9, 12, and 16 — still in the bed of the truck, according to the report. Ferguson was nowhere to be seen.
Police called for a K-9 unit to track Ferguson, according to the report. He was found about 50 feet away hiding in a bush. The K-9 bit him when he resisted, according to the report.
Meanwhile, officers were getting the story from the children as to how they ended up in Ferguson’s truck. One of the boys said he knew Ferguson, but didn’t say from where. He told police Ferguson offered to drive him and his friends to a bridge off U.S. 1 so they could jump off into the water below.
While they were at the bridge, Ferguson drank about four Four Loko’s — an alcoholic beverage — and told the kids to get in the back of the truck. One of the boys said when police started following Ferguson, he sped off.
The children had minor bruises and were transported to the hospital.
Ferguson was also taken to the Jupiter Medical Center, where his blood was drawn. Ferguson’s blood-alcohol content, according to the report, was a .33. The legal limit in Florida is.08.
Ferguson is charged with child abuse, DUI, fleeing officers and resisting arrest, among other charges. He is being held at the Palm Beach County Jail in lieu of $30,000 bail.