Noemi Garza, the Calhoun County Sheriff’s Deputy accused of drunkenly crashed her car, and then fleeing the scene and resisting arrest, has been sentenced to probation. In October, Garza pled guilty to single counts of operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated and possession of a firearm while intoxicated. A DUI arrest often means jail. Bu luckily for her, she will not spend any time behind bars.
The incident that brought about these charges took place earlier this year, in the summer. According to information provided by the Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety, just after midnight on June 13th, officers were dispatched to the scene of a two vehicle collision. At the scene, a man claimed that his car had been hit by a driver who had been unable to navigate the turn from Douglas Ave onto West Main street. In addition, the driver had not even stopped after the accident.
Instead, the car was driven further on down the street and then pulled over and parked. The driver, Garza, got out and went into a nearby home briefly, before coming back out to her car. When the officers went over to talk to her, she admitted that she had been in an accident while driving home from a party. She also told them that she was a Sheriff’s Deputy for Calhoun County.
When the officers asked Garza if she had been drinking at all, she admitted to having a few shots of Fireball Whiskey. She told the officers that the whiskey had affected her “a little, but not too much”. However, the officers present described Garza as smelling strongly of alcohol, having slurred speech and bloodshot eyes and having difficulty maintaining her balance when standing.
At that point one of the officers tried to arrest Garza for drunk driving. Which she didn’t like at all. She allegedly shouted at them, told them not to touch her, and then refused to get into the cruiser. Once the arresting officers had forced her into the backseat, however, she then attempted to slip off her handcuffs and kick open the back door. She also used offensive language, and called the female responding officer names.
Garza also apparently refused to submit to a Breathalyzer, but a blood draw revealed her BAC to be 0.17, putting her into the category of “super drunk” under state law. She was also discovered to have a handgun in her purse. She was initially charged with four misdemeanors, including attempted resisting and obstructing police, and failure to stop at the scene of a collision.
Garza was sentenced by Kalamazoo County District Judge Christopher T. Haenicke to six months of probation and told to pay a total of $625 in court costs.