Purnell Racine has been charged with felony criminal endangerment and aggravated DUI after he allegedly was caught driving drunk with an infant in the car.
On Tuesday a woman called 911 to report that a vehicle was tailgating her, nearly colliding with her car several times. The driver said she could see a child in the man’s car. She stopped in the parking lot of Scheels on 10th Avenue South and said the man sounded very drunk when she spoke with him.
A responding Great Falls police officer reported seeing the suspect vehicle driving erratically, so the officer activated his lights to stop the driver.
Court documents state the driver - later identified as Racine - got out of the car, and the officer saw an empty 1-liter bottle of vodka on the front passenger seat, and a woman was passed out in the back seat next to a 3-week-old baby in a car seat.
The officer also noted that the car was "littered with garbage, paper, and clothes."
Racine was reportedly having trouble keeping his eyes open and head up, and he initially denied drinking, but later admitted to drinking the bottle of vodka with his wife, according to court documents.
A breath sample of Racine showed a 0.242 blood-alcohol content, about three times the legal limit for driving, according to court documents.
Purnell was cited, but was not immediately taken to the Cascade County Detention Center due to what court documents state is a pre-existing "serious chest injury."
Purnell is charged with felony criminal endangerment, misdemeanor aggravated DUI, misdemeanor driving without a valid driver's license, and misdemeanor no insurance.
There are no indications that the child sustained any injuries.