The president of an Augusta business was arrested Sunday and again Wednesday after he tried to bribe his way out of a charge of driving under the influence, authorities said.
Michael Chivington Osbon, 44, of Winter Street, was charged with bribery, driving under the influence, speeding, failure to maintain lane and improper use of a cellphone.
Osbon is the president of Augusta Medical Services and the Julian W. Osbon Family Partnership. His father, Julian Osbon, was a well-known businessman and philanthropist who died in January.
According to a Georgia State Patrol incident report, the incident began just after midnight Saturday when a trooper was alerted about a reckless driver in a silver Mercedes-Benz headed east on Interstate 20 in McDuffie County traveling at more than 100 mph.
The trooper waited in the median just west of the Belair Road exit and saw a Mercedes pass at 91 mph, which he said was swerving into other lanes. The trooper pulled over the car at the Belair Road exit.
After a few minutes of looking through his wallet, the driver, identified as Osbon, provided his license; he smelled of alcohol, the trooper said.
Asked to get out of the car, Osbon was unsteady on his feet, according to the report. He failed several field sobriety tests and registered a 0.167 on a field blood alcohol sensor, according to the report. He refused an implied-consent request for a formal breath test.
After he was handcuffed, Osbon spent about 30 minutes offering money ranging from $10,000 to $30,000 in cashier’s checks or unmarked bills to avoid going to jail, according to the report. The report said Osbon’s comments included: “Thinking about how much I’d like to avoid problems. Yeah, 15 is a good number for me. I would never bribe anyone. That would be unacceptable. Especially if it were in cash,” and I don’t want to be in the Jail Report. That’s worth 30 cash.”
The entire conversation and actions at the scene were captured on video and audio recordings.
Osbon was taken to the Columbia County Detention Center, where he was booked on the traffic charges. He was released Sunday afternoon after posting a $4,400 bond, according to jailers.
After a Columbia County magistrate issued a felony bribery warrant, Osbon surrendered to authorities Wednesday. He was released from the jail Wednesday afternoon after posting a $5,100 bond, according to jailers.