POINCIANA (FOX 13) - A suspected drunk driver wreaked havoc on the Polk County town of Poinciana Thursday when he crashed into five children, killing one of them, and then hit a car injuring the pregnant driver.
But many say their outrage is magnified by the suspect’s former career as a law enforcement officer.
John Camfield is behind bars in Polk County, where Sheriff Grady Judd wants him locked up for life.
Judd called Camfield – an 18-year veteran of law enforcement in Mississippi - an “embarrassment” at a press conference Friday, adding that a former coworker of the accused DUI driver said Camfield was a drunk.
“He's not worthy of being called a former law enforcement officer. He’s a crook, he's a criminal, and he's being treated as a criminal because that’s the conduct that he displayed,” Sheriff Judd said. “He use to brag. John Camfield said that he and Captain Morgan had a special relationship. Rum was his drink of choice.”
Judd says Camfield was so drunk he didn't even remember hitting the five students with his car before running into another car driven by a pregnant woman.
"He was drunk, very drunk. We drew his blood, we gave him a breathalyzer. Seven hours after the crash he read a 0.14,” Judd said, adding the reading amounted to twice the legal blood alcohol limit to drive.
Judd said Camfield spent 18 years of his life wearing a badge in Mississippi, but he jumped from job to job, working for 10 different agencies during that time.
He retired from law enforcement, moved to Florida, and became public safety director for the Old Cypress Gardens.
"He knows law enforcement, now he's gonna know the other side. We're gonna put him in jail hopefully for the rest of his life,” Judd said.
Camfield had a clean driving record in Florida, until Thursday. The judge set his bond at $600,000 with conditions. We understand he is currently on suicide watch.