Buena Vista police arrested Romio Fiti, 53, Monday afternoon after he led officers on a chase on U.S. 285, which ended with Fiti being tased near a residence in Nathrop.
Fiti was charged with driving a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, driving a vehicle with a blood alcohol content of 0.08 or more, vehicular eluding, reckless driving, having an open alcoholic beverage container in a motor vehicle and violating a protection order.
The incident began when a Loaf ’N Jug cashier called Buena Vista police after allegedly smelling alcohol on Fiti. The cashier took note of his license plate number.
Buena Vista Police Chief Jimmy Tidwell said Officer Amber Lee responded to the call as Fiti was pulling out of the station in a Ford F-150 pickup truck. Chaffee County Sheriff’s Deputy Joey Lemley coincidentally was nearby.
As Lee and Lemley started pursuing Fiti on U.S. 285, he began speeding up. In the arrest report, Lee said Fiti crossed the center line roughly five times. No record was available of how fast Fiti was going at the time.
The two officers said they slowed down their pursuit to avoid any high-speed collisions with civilians, and Fiti slowed down in response.
Fiti turned off U.S. 285 into the trailer park area of Chateau Chaparral in Nathrop. The officers reported that they discovered the location was where Fiti lived. Lee said Fiti attempted to exit the vehicle to reach the front door of his residence. He was using his Ford F-150 to maintain his balance.
According to the arrest report, Lee informed Fiti that she would deploy her Taser if he continued approaching the entrance. After being tased, Fiti slid down the driver side of the vehicle and landed on his back on the gravel driveway. He was taken into custody around 3 p.m.
Lee reported that Fiti’s blood alcohol level was greater than 0.08. Fiti had two prior DUI cases and was on probation with a protection order that stated he could not possess or consume alcoholic beverages or controlled substances. His license was confiscated.
Lee reported she discovered an open fifth of Jim Beam Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey lying on the driver side seat with approximately one shot remaining. Nothing appeared to be spilled, she said.
Tidwell said the Taser is “one of the best tools we have,” and Lee and Lemley “did a great job.”