School resource officer resigns after blowing 3x legal driving limit while working

A Charlotte County school resource officer is accused of being drunk at an event with teenagers present. He blew a BAC of 0.246, three times the legal blood alcohol limit for driving.

He resigned, but now tells his side of the story and says he’s been treated unfairly.

Former Charlotte County deputy Joshua Muse says he felt fine when he showed up at a work event at Punta Gorda’s St. Vincent DePaul Center which involved teens last month.

According to an investigative report, Muse was wearing a Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office T-shirt, tactical BDU pants, and had his issued handgun in a holster, radio, and badge on his waist.

“I didn’t feel like I did anything wrong,” Muse said. “I didn’t feel intoxicated. I felt completely fine.”

According to an internal affairs investigation, an acting sergeant and lieutenant said the former Liberty Elementary School resource deputy appeared intoxicated and they smelled alcohol in his breath at the May 11 event.

Muse says he was drinking the night before while celebrating an anniversary until 5 a.m., “Probably at four or five beers, two or three mixed drinks, seven or eight total,” he said.

Arriving wearing his handgun on his waist, he says he didn’t feel drunk when he showed up to work later that day, although two breathalyzer tests found his blood alcohol content to be 0.230 and 0.246. The legal driving limit to drive is 0.08.

It’s unclear if he drove himself to the event. And he admits, “I made a mess up.”

Muse’s neighbor says he sympathizes with the former deputy but is unhappy the situation took place around kids.

Now, former deputy Muse is out of the job, resigning the day he was placed on administrative leave.

He says the one-week investigation didn’t get his full account of what happened, “Nobody ever spoke to me about the investigation. The only people that ever spoke to me was on scene that day.

Unhappy with the results, he says, “That was their outcome and I have to deal with it.” but accepting of the consequences.

The Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office says there was not enough evidence to charge Muse with a crime, adding if the investigation continued without Muse’s resignation, he would have faced discipline up to termination or withdrawing his appointment.

Reporter:Erika Jackson
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