Fla. Man Blames Dog for Leading Cops on High-Speed Chase

Reliford Cooper III
Manatee County Sheriff's Office Handout
Reliford Cooper III
Manatee County Sheriff's Office Handout

Man's best friend?

Well, Reliford Cooper III, 26, of Palmetto, Fla., apparently doesn't feel that way about his dog.


He told police that it was his dog, not he, who led them on a high-speed chase through a community that ended with his car crashed into an occupied home in the city, about 15 miles north of Sarasota, according go the Smoking Gun.

"My dog was driving that car," he said in a quip ripped straight from a comedy script.

The incident began about 7:45 p.m. Wednesday when police began pursuing the vehicle after spotting it racing down the street, the report says. The driver dashed through a stop sign and hurtled through two ditches before plowing into an occupied home on a residential side street.

After the crash, the man dashed from the car and sought refuged in a Pentecostal church, the report says. But the church's parishioners chased him out of the building, and he was greeted by police on the street, according to the news outlet.

"Who was chasing me?" asked Cooper, who allegedly reeked of alcohol and marijuana, the report says. "You slow as f—k!"

He then proceeded to deny that he was behind the wheel of the automobile.

"My dog was driving that car," he said, reads the report. "I ran 'cause I wanted to. You ain't gonna find no drugs or guns on me.”


Cooper was charged with drunk driving, resisting arrest and leaving the scene of an accident, the report says.

The dog, whose name was not released, was apparently not charged.

Read more at the Smoking Gun.