Suspected drunk driver in cab rear-ends ambulance in Phoenix

Posted: Updated:
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Joel A. Honeycutt Joel A. Honeycutt
(Source: 3TV and CBS 5) (Source: 3TV and CBS 5)
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)

One person is in the hospital, two EMTs are being medically evaluated and a cab driver is facing DUI charges after plowing his taxi into the back of an ambulance early Thursday morning. 

It happened just after 2 a.m. near the QuikTrip at 22nd Street and Thomas Road as the ambulance was about to turn into the parking lot. After both vehicles pulled in, the cab driver, later identified by police as Joel A. Honeycutt, ran away leaving his passenger behind. Police caught up with him a short time later in the neighborhood near the QT.

Police Honeycutt, 33, blew a high number -- nearly 0.21 -- on a field Breathalyzer test. It's not clear how long he had been working while allegedly drunk. It's also not clear if he has a history of DUI.

A BAC of 0.21 puts the driver in the category of super extreme DUI as defined by Arizona law (ARS 28-1382).

  • DUI -> 0.08+
  • Extreme DUI -> 0.15+
  • Super Extreme DUI -> 0.20+

A blood test is more accurate than a breath test and is necessary to determine what charge the cab driver might face.

Officers on the scene said Honeycutt also had drugs on him.

The passenger from the cab suffered serious but not life-threatening injuries and was taken to the hospital. The two EMTs in the ambulance, which belongs to Life Line Ambulance, initially refused transport but also were taken in as a precaution. 

All three of those people are expected to be OK.

Thomas Road was closed between 22nd and 24th streets for the investigation.

Based in Prescott, Life Line Ambulance has a fleet of 30 units and a staff of nearly 200 making it the largest privately owned ambulance company in Northern Arizona.

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