Police dash cam,March 1/08:The wealthy developer whose assault on police led the former Boca Raton police chief to resign in 2006 landed in jail Tuesday after another brush with officers.
Gregory Talbott, 53, was arrested shortly before 1 a.m. in Boca Raton and charged with battery on a law enforcement officer, driving under the influence, resisting arrest and refusal to submit to a breath test.
An officer found him disoriented and slumped over in a 2006 Bentley in the 2800 block of Northeast Second Avenue, police said. When police tried to get him out of the car, he grabbed officers' arms and erupted in an expletive-charged tantrum, police said. An officer stunned Talbott three times in the back with a Taser gun until he stopped fighting, police said.
Talbott suffered a cut over his left eye in the arrest, police said. A doctor stitched up the wound at Boca Raton Community Hospital and officers later took him to the police station and then to jail.
His arrest comes nearly a year and one-half after he pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges of assaulting a police officer and resisting arrest without violence in September 2005.
The plea agreement resulted from a scuffle at a Boca Raton eatery that sparked a controversy about whether then-Police Chief Andrew Scott overstepped his authority when he ordered Talbott's release on the night of the incident. Scott said at the time that he made a discretionary call because Talbott had a heart condition. Talbott was treated for injuries at a hospital and released after less than an hour at the police station on that occasion.
Scott received harsh criticism for his actions, including a no-confidence vote from the police union, Fraternal Order of Police Boca Raton Lodge 35. He left the department in February 2006.
Under the plea agreement, Talbott was placed on probation for a year and ordered to undergo a substance abuse evaluation, complete an anger management class and perform 10 hours of community service.
Talbott's lawyers, Robert Sweetapple and Richard Lubin, could not be reached by phone for comment on Tuesday. . Talbott, who operates Talbott Realty, is a downtown Boca Raton developer who contributes to city causes and City Council candidates.
His arrest Tuesday was videotaped from a squad-car camera and involved three officers who were not on the force when Talbott was arrested in 2005, Boca Raton police spokeswoman Officer Sandra Boonenberg said. Police attempt to videotape all drunken driving arrests, she said.
"This was done by the book," Boonenberg said.
Police said they discovered Talbott after a caller reported a person sitting in a car on the side of the road with its lights on. When an officer walked up to the Bentley, Talbott's eyes were bloodshot, his face was flushed and he smelled of alcohol. Asked where he was coming from, he said, "I don't know," police said.
Officers asked Talbott to get out of the car but he refused, officials said. He handed over a key to the car but would not turn over another key. As an officer reached in to get the second key, Talbott grabbed her arm, police said. He did the same, police said, when another officer tried to keep him from making a call on his cell phone.
At that point, officers pulled him out of the car onto the street, his face pressed against the pavement, according to the video released by the police.
"What are you doing to me?" he shouted, according to the video.
As Talbott attempted to roll over, an officer pressed the Taser against his back and fired, the video showed. Screaming in pain and shouting obscenities, he still kept fighting. The officer fired two more times. Finally in handcuffs, Talbott, dressed in a white shirt and dark slacks, walked toward the police car.
At the hospital, Talbott swayed from side to side and his head slumped forward, police said. He declined to take blood and breath tests that would have determined whether he had been drinking.
He was released Tuesday from jail on a $9,000 bond, according to the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office.
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