TEMPE, Ariz. — A man was charged with driving under the influence while riding a Bird scooter in what Tempe police say is the Valley’s first DUI case involving one of the popular electric rideshare scooters.
On Jan. 2, the Tempe City Prosecutor’s Office filed charges against 28-year-old Shelton Begay for an October 2018 incident where he was riding a Bird scooter with a BAC of 0.285 and crashed into a moving car on Rural Road.
According to documents obtained from the Tempe Police Department, Begay was traveling southbound on a Bird scooter on Rural Road approaching Broadway Road when he crossed the lane line and crashed into the back of a woman’s car.
The woman pulled over and called 911 but Begay had fled the scene, police say. According to the incident report, officers found Begay nearby, conducted field sobriety tests, and determined he was intoxicated. Officers also found a 16-ounce can of Four Peaks Golden Lager and seven 50ml bottles of 99 Banana’s liqueur in Begay’s backpack.
Begay was transported to a nearby hospital for minor injuries. A blood test taken at the hospital showed Begay had a BAC of 0.285, according to the police documents.
Tempe police say Begay is facing several charges for reckless driving, DUI with a BAC of 0.20 or above and hit-and-run because he left the scene of an accident.
Arizona is known for its strict DUI laws. The law goes beyond driving a car while drunk. If you’re impaired using any form of transportation that can be powered on its own, you can be arrested for DUI.
Editor’s Note: NBC’s Alejandra Armstrong contributed to this article.