There’s sleeping hard and then there is what Jamal Anderson did on the night he was arrested last week. According to police reports, officers tried several times to awaken the former Atlanta Falcons running back without success and had to go through the sunroof to get into the SUV he was driving.
Anderson, 39, was pulled over around 4 a.m. June 24 on Chamblee-Tucker Road near I-85near Atlanta and charged with DUI. Before that, though, police said his 2008 black Cadillac Escalade was stopped in the middle lane of the road, impeding traffic.
An officer pulled up behind Anderson’s SUV and “observed the traffic light at the intersection turn green several times, but the vehicle did not move,” according to the report.
The officer said the SUV’s windows were rolled up and Anderson was asleep at the wheel.
“I tapped on Mr. Anderson’s window several times in an attempt to wake him up. Mr. Anderson did not wake up,” according to the report.
The officer said he was unable to open the car door and summoned backup. The two officers used their cars to block the Escalade from rolling, and “I then reached into Mr. Anderson’s vehicle through his open sunroof and unlocked his vehicle.”
After putting the Escalade in park, turning off the ignition and removing the keys, the officer said he tapped Anderson several times and he still did not wake up. Anderson finally awoke, the report said, but not until he had been handcuffed.
Anderson denied he had been drinking but said he’d been having family problems, according to the report. The officer said he noticed “a very strong odor of an alcoholic beverage” and that Anderson was sweating profusely and his eyes were bloodshot, according to the report.
“Mr. Anderson’s speech was slurred and he stumbled getting out of his car,” the officer wrote.
After giving Anderson a field sobriety test, the officer charged him with DUI. He said Anderson refused to take a breathalyzer test.
Anderson’s attorneys told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution last week that Anderson was not drunk but just extremely tired after a visit with his family.