Florida Deputy Accused of Street Racing Says He 'Wanted to Impress' Girlfriend, Cops Say

Street Racing Deputy
Orange County Sheriff's Deputy Brian Espinal in the back of St. Cloud Police Department cruiser.St. Cloud Police Dept.

Florida deputy accused of street racing and reckless driving told police he want to impress his girlfriend, according to bodycam footage.

A Florida deputy arrested for street racing told police he "wanted to impress" his girlfriend with his new motorcycle, according to bodycam footage.

Orange County Sheriff’s Deputy Brian Espinal was going 90 mph in a 45-mph zone, weaving in and out of traffic as he sped down a crowded street accompanied by another motorcyclist, police said.

The other cyclist fled when police turned on their lights and sirens, authorities said. Espinal stopped his motorcycle and told officers he was a deputy, according to bodycam video released by the St. Cloud Police Department.

Espinal denied racing the other cyclist. “I can see how that looks, and it wasn’t like that,” he is heard saying on the footage.

His girlfriend was on the back of his motorcycle.

"I just got the bike not too long ago, and I wanted to impress her. It's really bad. I don't speed at all," he told officers.

Espinal said he didn't know the other cyclist, and they had just been admiring each other's motorcycles.

"This statement is not probable (or believable) by a reasonable person," an officer wrote in his arrest report.  Espinal displayed "blatant disregard for traffic law and public motorist (safety)," the report alleges.

Espinal was charged with misdemeanor counts of street racing and reckless driving. His arraignment is scheduled for Nov. 21, according to court records.

The 27-year-old deputy was placed on administrative duty pending the outcome of his case, authorities said. Espinal joined the department in 2019, the Orange County Sheriff's Office said in a statement.

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