When former San Patricio County Sheriff’s Deputy Nathan Coates crashed into an 18-wheeler in July, his blood alcohol content material was practically twice the authorized restrict. He was fired, however his case hasn’t been prosecuted.
Now, he has a brand new job as a police officer for the Metropolis of Mathis. Paperwork and sprint digital camera video obtained by KRIS 6 Information paint a clearer image of the day main as much as the crash, and the way inaction by the Bee County Lawyer’s Workplace allowed Coates to get a brand new job with a distinct division.
On April 21, Derrick Garcia was driving his 18-wheeler house from work on Freeway 181 when he noticed a automobile out of the nook of his eye coming towards him from Baker Street.
“He was like that and simply, there was no time for him to cease,” Garcia mentioned. “He didn’t even cease – attempt to cease.”
A Texas Division of Transportation crash report reveals the driving force on Baker Street ran the cease signal and t-boned Garcia’s massive rig.
“He threw me up on one aspect of the trailer,” Garcia recollects. “I introduced it again and swerved backwards and forwards.”
Garcia was in a position to name 911, then checked on the opposite driver.
“I do know who he’s,” Garcia mentioned. “I walked up and I noticed him. Like, out of all individuals, it needed to be a cop.”
Nathan Coates, 52, an 18-year veteran of the San Patricio County Sheriff’s Workplace, was the driving force, and he was badly injured. He was flown to Christus Spohn Hospital-Shoreline for therapy.
Whereas on the hospital, officers obtained a subpoena to attract Coates’ blood, which confirmed a blood alcohol content material of 0.14 – practically twice the authorized restrict of 0.08. That blood take a look at resulted in a warrant for Coates’ arrest. An investigation into the crash by the Texas Division of Public Security revealed Coates was stopped at 2:10 p.m. the day of the crash by a Bee County Sheriff’s Deputy as a result of Coates was swerving on the street.
In physique digital camera video obtained by KRIS 6 information, Coates tells the Deputy he was drained from working in a single day and was on the telephone.
He additionally tells the Deputy 3 times that he works for the San Patricio County Sheriff’s Workplace.
The Bee County Deputy checks Coates’ license and insurance coverage, then lets him go away and not using a quotation.
Coates crashed into Garcia’s 18-wheeler at 4:42 p.m.
Coates refused to remark for this story when reached by telephone. KRIS 6 Information additionally referred to as and emailed his legal professional.
The San Patricio County Sheriff’s Workplace positioned Coates on go away after the accident. He utilized for reinstatement however was denied. As an alternative, he acquired a termination letter from San Patricio County Sheriff Oscar Rivera.
The letter lists Coates’ alleged violations, together with the blood alcohol stage, arrest warrant and failure to keep up insurance coverage.
Coates then received a job as an officer with the Mathis Police Division.
Mathis Police Chief Marshall Roush informed KRIS 6 Information he was conscious of the incident and that his division runs a full felony historical past test. He says in addition they test to see if an officer was honorably discharged from their earlier company.
San Patricio County Sheriff Mark Rivera says Coates’ discharge was honorable as a result of he was by no means convicted. However you may’t be convicted when you’re by no means prosecuted.
On July 1, although Coates had turned himself in on a warrant for DWI, Bee County Lawyer Michael Knight despatched a letter saying he selected to not take motion on the case. We requested Knight to clarify his choice. In an e mail to KRIS 6 Information, Knight mentioned Coates’ case, “will obtain motion earlier than the statute of limitations runs out in two years.”
Knight didn’t reply to follow-up questions on whether or not he intends to prosecute.
Whereas Coates has a brand new job, Garcia and his household nonetheless look forward to solutions. When requested why they thought Coates wasn’t prosecuted, Garcia’s spouse Kayla had a fast reply.
“As a result of he works for the sheriff’s division,” she mentioned. “I believe they wished to comb it beneath the rug.”