Ambulance driver charged with DUI

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An ambulance driver is accused of being drunk when he crashed into another vehicle.

John Lara is charged with aggravated driving under the influence causing an accident resulting in bodily harm, disobeying red light, failing to reduce speed, negligent driving, and failing to carry or display a driver’s license.

Police say Lara’s blood alcohol level was three times over the legal limit when he ran a red light and hit a pickup truck at Montrose and Clark on Monday.

A witness says the ambulance had its lights and sirens on, as it approached the busy intersection.

“He came up to the intersection with cars that were westbound and eastbound continuously on Montrose,” said witness Nick Mendez.  “I just watched and the ambulance didn’t slow down at all. It was as if he had a death wish.’’

Lara had glassy eyes and slurred speech, according to the police report.

“(Lara) was unable to explain where he was going or why he was using his emergency equipment when there wasn’t a patient in the ambulance,’’ the report said.

“(Lara) repeatedly covered his mouth in an apparent attempt to hide the strong odor of alcoholic beverage,’’ according to the report.

Police say Lara’s blood alcohol level turned out to be .271, which is more than three times the legal limit for driving.

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