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South Side man charged for DUI twice in six weeks

Six weeks after he crashed his motorcycle while allegedly drunk in South Williamsport, Stephen Tidwell was arrested yet again by borough police for DUI, according to court records filed at the office of District Judge Gary Whiteman.

The 34-year-old cyclist left the crash scene after he upset his 2017 Yamaha motorcycle in a yard in the 500 block of East Second Avenue, just east of his home, about 11:10 p.m. on May 20, Patrolman Seth Stropp.

Within a matter of minutes, the officer tracked down Tidwell at his home at 470 Swan Alley.

“His left eye was swollen shut and his face was covered in blood,” Stropp said, describing, in an affidavit, what he saw when Tidwell came to the door.

“I should have never been on my bike,” Tidwell told the officer.

Stropp said he “detected a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage emitting from Tidwell’s breath.” He called an ambulance that took the injured man to the Williamsport Regional Medical Center, where he was admitted that night to the intensive care unit due to the extent of his injuries.

Tidwell admitted to medical staff that he “smoked at least one marijuana joint prior” to the crash.

A woman who called 911 after Tidwell crashed his cycle in her yard told Stropp that the cyclist was not coherent and that “he sat up and asked her where he was. She told him where he was and he told her he thought he was at his house,” according to the officer’s affidavit.

Tidwell told the woman not to call the police because he was “too drunk to be on his bike,” Stropp said. Tidwell recovered and was discharged from the hospital. He was charged with DUI and driving without a license after blood tests revealed that his blood-alcohol content level was 0.23 at the time of the crash.

Stropp said Tidwell was under the influence of “a combination of alcohol and marijuana” at the time.

A little more than six weeks later, on the night of July 4, Tidwell was drunk as he approached the borough side of the Carl E. Stotz Little League Memorial Bridge (Market Street) about 8:15 p.m. while riding the very same cycle that he had crashed earlier, borough police alleged in court papers.

Again, Tidwell’s blood-alcohol content level was 0.23, police said. Police were in the process of shutting down the bridge in preparation for that night’s fireworks show. The northbound lanes were already closed.

Tidwell told police he saw fire police officers and a large “Bridge Closed” sign in the middle of the northbound lanes at the foot of bridge, but he thought he could still cross the bridge.

Tidwell waived his preliminary hearings Monday in both cases and remains free on $10,000 bail.