AURORA | For the fourth time in a calendar year, an Aurora police officer has been accused of driving drunk.
Interim Aurora Police Chief Vanessa Wilson on Monday announced she has fired Officer Jaired Dozier after he was suspected of crashing his car while drunk in El Paso County last month.
State court records show Colorado Springs police officers arrested Dozier, 23, March 17. He has been charged with a pair of misdemeanor DUI offenses and a traffic violation. He is scheduled to be arraigned in El Paso County court June 4.
When reached by phone, Dozier’s defense attorney Jay Tiftickjian declined to comment on behalf of his client.
Dozier began working with Aurora police last February and graduated from the department’s academy in August, according to Wilson.
Because Dozier was still in the probationary period of his employment, Wilson’s decision cannot be appealed. Aurora voters in 2018 approved a ballot question that extended the probationary period for all Aurora cops and firefighters for a full year after recruits graduate from training academies.
Dozier is at least the fourth officer to be suspected of driving drunk on or off-duty in the past year. Officer Annette Brook pleaded guilty to misdemeanor DUI in January. State troopers cited Brook after finding she had crashed her car into concrete barrier while off-duty in Douglas County last June.
Another officer, Joshua Teeples, in February pleaded guilty to DUI charges stemming form an incident in which he crashed into another car while off-duty in Douglas County last August.
Last March, Officer Nate Meier was found passed out and drunk in his running cruiser while on-duty near Buckley Air Force Base. He was reprimanded internally and demoted, but remains on the force and was never charged with a crime.
In a statement, Wilson said Dozier’s ouster is not reflective of the department’s some 730 uniformed personnel.
“Officer Dozier’s actions do not reflect the professionalism of those who wear this uniform and someone who should represent this organization,” she said in a statement. “Since taking over as Aurora’s Interim Police Chief, I promised that I would not stand for or allow behavior like this in our agency. Our officers continue to be out in our community, every single day, during this unprecedented time. Their hard work and dedication should not be overshadowed with this one officers decisions he made while off-duty.”