Officials have released body camera footage of the night Georgia State University police Chief Joseph Spillane was arrested in Fayetteville on DUI and other charges.
In the video, obtained by Channel 2 Action News, Spillane told the arresting officer he was coming from a tavern but was not intoxicated.
“I have had two beers,” he said. “Two beers, honest to goodness. I feel good.”
The June 18 exchange happened after Fayetteville police stopped Spillane’s 1992 Mazda Miata on Ga. 85 South.
A woman Channel 2 identified as Spillane’s wife was with him. In the video, she was heard begging Spillane not to complete a field sobriety test.
“Stop it, Joe,” she said.
Spillane agreed to complete the test.
“They’ll put me in jail if I don’t take it,” he said.
Spillane was asked to walk heel-to-toe for nine steps and to hold his leg in the air while counting, Channel 2 reported.
At one point, Spillane told the arresting officer he’d never been subjected to anything like this in his 30-year career, according to the video.
He went on to ask the officer how long he had been a cop.
“A couple years,” the officer said in the video.
When Spillane learned he would be arrested, he asked: “You’re going to put me in jail? Seriously?”
He told Channel 2 afterward that he was "stunned” he failed the test.
In addition to DUI, Spillane was arrested on charges of having an open container and failing to maintain a lane, the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office said.
“I’m embarrassed for my family,” Spillane told Channel 2. “I’m embarrassed for the university. And I’m embarrassed for my position.”
GSU 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, 53, of Atlanta, was a deputy chief with the Atlanta Police Department when he was named GSU’s police chief in October 2016.
He stepped into that role after the former chief was removed following a double shooting and a handful of robberies on campus.
Maj. Brian Lawton, who has worked with GSU police since 2000, is acting as interim chief, Jones said.
Spillane has been out on $2,004 bond since the day of his arrest, according to records.
“I’m looking forward to my day in court,” he told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Monday.