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Docs: State rep asked bar patrons about cocaine before drunken driving arrest

Posted at 12:24 PM, Aug 13, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-13 19:57:28-04

INDIANAPOLIS — An Indiana state representative from Indianapolis threatened to use his status to have police officers fired when he was arrested over the weekend, according to police documents.

Rep. Dan Forestal, D-Indianapolis, faces preliminary charges of impersonating a public servant, resisting law enforcement and operating a vehicle while intoxicated. The 36-year-old was arrested at about 11:30 p.m. Saturday, near the intersection of 21st Street and Shadeland Avenue, according to a police report.

According to the public report, officers with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department were called to the intersection to investigate a report of a man impersonating a police officer.

When Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officers stopped his car Saturday, police said he first put his hands up, then back down, then grabbed the steering wheel as he was pulled out of the vehicle by two officers, according to a police report.

A responding officer heard Forestal threaten their jobs, RTV6 has learned.

“Due to his position in public safety and as a state rep he would have all of the officers’ badges,” the officer wrote.

At some point during the arrest, Forestal also identified himself as a state representative, a firefighter and the nephew of Marion County Sheriff Kerry Forestal, RTV6 has learned. Responding officers smelled alcohol on his breath.

At some point in the investigation, other officers went to the location where a 911 call was placed and found a man and a woman. They told police Forestal approached them in a car and said, “I'm a legit officer doing a drug bust and today is the last day before the feds descend and start kicking in doors," the report states.

Another IMPD officer went to the Blue Moon Tavern in the 7100 block of E. Washington Street. The officer spoke to a bartender, who said Forestal had been in the bar area harassing customers throughout the night, according to the report.

The bartender told police that Forestal was telling patrons he was a firefighter and asking them where he could purchase “party favors,” such as cocaine, according to the report.

When he was arrested, Forestal claimed he was hurt and requested an ambulance, according to the documents. He was taken to Eskenazi Hospital.

The report states Forestal refused a breathalyzer test, and an officer requested a blood draw search warrant. When the officer tried to serve the warrant, Forestal took the warrant from their hands, according to the report. Forestal had to be restrained, and the blood draw was taken, according to the report.

According to an IFD spokesperson, Forestal is a private with the Indianapolis Fire Department, not a lieutenant as his online biography states.

“Private Forestal is an active firefighter with the IFD and has served on the department for 12 years,” IFD spokesperson Rita Reith said. “We are monitoring the pending investigation.”

The biography also states he has served as a bailiff in Marion County Superior Court 11 and a guard in the Marion County Jail II, his online biography states.

Forestal has served in the Indiana House of Representatives since 2012. The Indiana House Democratic Caucus declined comment on the arrest.