By Jennifer Edwards
The Cincinnati Enquirer
FAIRFAX - Video from a Fairfax police cruiser camera implies University of Cincinnati basketball coach Bob Huggins was stopped previously by Fairfax police for suspicion of drunk driving - but instead of arresting him, officers took him home.
In an exchange that occurred inside a police cruiser late Tuesday - minutes after Huggins was arrested on a drunken-driving charge - an officer can be heard on the tape saying:
"You know we had you once before. You know that, and we took you home. Remember that?" the officer asked.
Huggins replied: "No, sir."
The video ends there but earlier, just after Huggins was placed in the cruiser after his arrest, he can be heard muttering profanities to himself.
Huggins, who has been suspended indefinitely with pay, and Bob Goin, UC's athletic director, declined comment Saturday.
Fairfax Police Chief Rick Patterson was out of the office Saturday and could not be reached for comment.
Fairfax Mayor Ted Shannon said as far as he knew, the only time Huggins has been pulled over by Fairfax police was Tuesday. Shannon said he had only seen segments of the police cruiser video on television and hadn't seen the portion that contained the brief conversation between the officer and Huggins.
"I don't know what they got him for before - if he was drinking or what," Shannon said. "I think it's unfair to do this before the trial. How can he get a fair trial when they've already tried him in all the televisions and newspapers? That's the only problem I have with it. If he's guilty, he needs to pay the price. But he hasn't been proven guilty yet."
Shannon said Fairfax police do not let intoxicated motorists in general off with warnings or rides home.
It is not out of the ordinary, however, for Fairfax police to give those they arrest or cite rides home or let speeders off with a warning, the mayor said, depending on circumstances.
"Sometime the officers have to go someplace else. They make stops all the time where they will let the people go if another run comes in, trouble run or a pursuit or something like that, a robbery. They'll tell the people, OK, just slow down and be more careful and I'm going to let you go this time.
"Usually they don't drive people home unless there's an accident and they live close by," he continued. "Our policy, I can tell you, is that we want everybody treated fairly. We try not to make it any harder than it is on them, create any more hardships for a family."
Meagan Pollnow contributed to this report. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
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