updated 8/8/2007 10:16:20 PM ET 2007-08-09T02:16:20

A police officer who crashed his car into a convenience store when his cowboy boot slipped off the brake said Wednesday he was embarrassed and not opposed to a new department ban on the smooth-soled footwear.

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“They had leather soles and when I hit the brake, my foot slipped off and hit the accelerator. It was my fault,” said Michael Herko, one of two full-time officers in this rural north Florida town.

Herko, 62, said he was pulling into the store when his squad car crashed Sunday night. The 40-year police veteran was wearing a type of cowboy boots called ropers.

Herko’s patrol car crashed through the store’s two glass doors.

As a result of the crash, police Chief Bill Smith banned cowboy boots for officers on duty.

“This has never been an issue before because it had never been a problem,” Smith said. “It came up now because I knew he was a good driver and a good officer so I knew there had to be something mechanical involved and that is why we got to looking at the cowboy boots.”

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