Six Royal Navy sailors made headlines just hours after HMS Queen Elizabeth had docked in Jacksonville, Florida. The massive 65,000-ton aircraft carrier departed Portsmouth Naval Base August 18 and arrived at the Mayport naval base September 5, when its crew members went out for a night on the town, the Telegraph reported Sunday.
The crew arrived in the US to test run F-35B fighter jets before their scheduled deployment in 2021.
However, things got out of hand quickly when locals reportedly saw the boisterous British sailors urinating from a pub balcony, irritating local restaurants for not tipping enough, and fighting each other in in the street.
Sergeant Larry Smith of the Jacksonville Beach Police Department arrested most of the British sailors for drunk and disorderly conduct, with three others for resisting arrest. One of the six was tasered for refusing to put his hands behind his back, and a female officer tasered another sailor who would not stop fighting.
"It happens. They seem to beat the mess out of each other and knock their teeth out, but once they pick up their teeth off the ground they hug and then are best friends again," Smith stated.
"We can confirm that a number of naval personnel are assisting US police with their enquiries," a Royal Navy Spokeswoman said. "The Naval Service places great importance on maintaining the highest possible standards of behaviour from its personnel at all times."
The UK Ministry of Defence has doubled down on drunken misconduct after releasing a report July 2017 documenting widespread alcohol abuse, noting that it was "higher than in the UK general population" and with estimates ranging from "39% to 67% of the military population".
The MoD had implemented an alcohol risk screening mechanism in June 2016, which follows up with an Alcohol Brief Intervention (ABI). Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT-C) statistics, the highest alcohol offenders were typically "young and single, being of more junior rank and being of white ethnicity," the report stated.