A 69-year-old Halifax man faces a charge of driving under the influence following an incident that occurred Sunday, Sept. 29, in the 1100 block of Crawford Road that left Halifax officer M. W. Bowen diving into a nearby ditch for safety.

According to Stuart Comer, chief of the Halifax Police Department, Bowen had stopped that Sunday evening to clear debris out of the roadway while leaving his patrol vehicle parked in the roadway with its emergency lights on.

As he cleaned the road, a 2014 Chrysler driven by John Ellis of Crawford Road began traveling toward Bowen and his patrol vehicle at a high rate of speed. Bowen immediately waved to the vehicle to signal for it to slow down.

Instead, the vehicle continued and swerved to miss the patrol vehicle causing Bowen to “dive into the ditch” to avoid being hit, Comer said.

The vehicle then came to a stop.

After picking himself off the ground, Bowen said he approached the vehicle where he smelled alcohol.

Comer said Ellis admitted having a couple of beers and a couple shots of vodka while watching a football game, and he was now headed home.

He then failed three field sobriety tests and was taken to Blue Ridge Regional Jail where he was given a breathalyzer test.

Ellis was placed under arrest, and Bowen was sent to Sentara Halifax Regional Hospital to be checked out.

The police chief said Bowen only had minor soreness and was cleared for duty the next day.