Drunken Hitchhiker Gets Ride to Jail

Police found the Dacula man in the middle of the road, frantically waving his arms.

A Dacula man narrowly avoided getting hit by a police cruiser after attempting to hitch a ride home in the early morning hours of July 25.

At approximately 3:40 a.m., an officer was dispatched to Lawrenceville-Suwanee Road near Whitehead Place in response to a report of a man trying to flag down passing cars. The officer spotted the man, later identified as Andrew Welch, 21, of 1794 School House Trace in Dacula, standing in the eastbound lanes and waving his arms frantically as if trying to get the attention of motorists.

"I was startled by him being in the roadway and swerved to my right to avoid striking the male," the officer wrote in the arrest report.

By the time the officer turned the patrol cruiser around, Welch had crossed over the westbound lanes of Lawrenceville-Suwanee Road and was walking on the sidewalk. 

Welch informed the officer that he was walking to his friend's house and provided a valid Georgia's driver's license confirming his identification. While speaking with Welch, the officer noticed a strong odor of alcoholic beverage on Welch's breath. When asked how much alcohol he had consumed, Welch replied, "Three beers, but I'm not driving." 

Welch reportedly said that he was at his home when his friend called and asked him to come over. Welch could not provide his friend's name, where the friend lived or the name of the road he was currently on. According to the police report, Welch explained that he was planning on walking through subdivisions until he found the right house.

The officer noted that Welch's speech was "fast and slurred" and that he was "unsteady on his feet, swaying back and forth."

"Welch appeared to be under the influence of alcohol to the extent it was not safe for him to continue walking," the officer wrote in the report.

Welch was taken into custody on a charge of pedestrian under the influence. On the way to jail, Welch admitted he had been lying and apologized to the officer saying that he had been to a party and was just trying to get a ride home.

He was released from jail four hours later on a $152 bond. 

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Other recent incidents investigated by the Gwinnett County Police Department include: 

July 27

  • Theft by taking in the 2400 block of Hamilton Mill Road.
  • Aggravated assault in the 2600 block of Braselton Highway.
  • .

July 28

  • DUI arrest near the intersection of Auburn Road and Belfaire Lake Drive.
  • Simple battery in the 200 block of Church Street.
  • Identity fraud in the 3500 block of Braselton Highway.
  • Identity fraud in the 2900 block of Belfaire Lake Drive.

July 29

  • .
  • Financial transaction card fraud in the 2900 block of Freemans Mill Road.

July 30

  • Burglary in the 1300 block of Mineral Springs Road.
  • Burglary in the 1500 block of Log Cabin Lane.
  • Identity fraud in the 3300 block of Birchfield Court.
  • Battery in the 2700 block of Majestic Circle.
  • Simple battery in the 2800 block of James Henry Drive.
  • Theft by taking in the 2600 block of Freemans Walk Drive. 
  • Entering auto in the 2800 block of Armada Lane.

July 31

  • DUI arrest on Hamilton Lake Parkway near Lake Cove Court.
  • Theft by taking in the 2200 block of Tresfoil Court.

For questions about this blotter, email dacula@patch.com. Click for Dacula Patch's crime reporting policies.




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