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‘I’m disappointed that this happened,’ GSU police chief says of DUI arrest

In his first public comments since his arrest, Georgia State University police Chief Joseph Spillane said he does not feel he was driving under the influence of alcohol and is “looking forward to my day in court.”

Records show Fayetteville police stopped Spillane, 53, driving a 1992 Mazda Miata southbound on Ga. 85 on June 18.

In addition to DUI, he was arrested on charges of having an open container and failing to maintain a lane, the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office said.

“I’m disappointed that this happened,” Spillane said.

He said he couldn’t go into specifics of that evening or answer questions about any alleged alcohol consumption. He has hired an attorney.

The university placed Spillane on paid administrative leave “pending the outcome of a university investigation,” Georgia State spokeswoman Andrea Jones said in a statement.

“The university takes this matter very seriously. We understand the severity of the offense, especially when it is committed by a law enforcement officer.” 

Spillane was a deputy chief with the Atlanta Police Department when he was named GSU’s police chief in October 2016.

RELATED: Georgia State University announces new campus police chief

He stepped into that role after the former chief was removed following a double shooting and a handful of robberies on campus. 

RELATED: GSU police chief demoted after campus shooting

Spillane, who lives in Atlanta, has been out on $2,004 bond since the day of his arrest, according to records.

Maj. Brian Lawton, who has worked with GSU police since 2000, is acting as interim chief, Jones said.

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