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Roommate: Clearwater man who drove recklessly on beach has history of anger, criminal past

JUDGE: Stiles threatened to slit officer's throat
Posted at 1:16 PM, Jul 21, 2017

The roommate of the man Clearwater Police arrested Thursday after he drove on the beach from Clearwater to Caladesi Island and streamed it on Facebook Live is now speaking out, offering more insight into what happened in the hours before the reckless driving spree.

A Facebook Live video obtained by ABC Action News from 27-year-old Ryan Stiles' profile shows him driving a Jeep and drinking what appears to be liquor. The video shows he also came close to hitting several beach goers.

Sarah Wright, Stiles' roommate, said Stiles was upset in the hours before the reckless driving spree.

"He peeled out he was upset," Wright said. "He had had an interview with a lawyer he didn't want to go to. He got angry, stormed off."

Wright said she got a notification on Facebook that Stiles' was streaming live. She said she saw him drinking and driving.

"He was talking about how he was going to go out in a glory," she said.

She says she immediately called 911 so she could tell them where he was.

Wright says it was not out of character for Stiles to get angry and storm off. But she said she couldn't believe he would do something so reckless.

"It was a shock that he went this far with everything," she said.

She said she was frightened watching him drive down the beach.

"I was definitely scared that he was going to hurt someone," Wright said.  "I even posted on there, you're not going to just hurt yourself, you're going to end up killing somebody." 

She said she thought he was going to attempt to crash into a police cruise

"He was saying things like 'F' the police," she said.

Wright says he had recently spoken with a public defender and Stiles told her that they would not allow him probation.

She says he has a criminal past and tells ABC Action News she believes when he got into a fight with his girlfriend earlier in the day, everything began overwhelming him.

"He just went forget it, and he said he wanted to go out 'in history'," Wright said.

Wright said she is glad no one was hurt.

"He could have made a U-TURN and gone the opposite way where there's hundreds of beachgoers. "Hundreds of people were out there. So many people could have gotten hurt."

In his first court appearance on Friday afternoon, ABC Action News learned from the judge that police officers said Stiles threatened several officers during his arrest and questioning in a holding room, even threatening to slit an officer's throat.

Stiles was already out on release for threatening an officer with violence, the judge said.

After taking into consideration his criminal past and the threats to officers during this arrest, the judge revoked Stiles' bond. He will remain behind bars for the foreseeable future.