Alleged impaired driver hits, totals Douglas Police Department patrol car
- Written by Kristen Kitchens
- Published in News
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A 30-year-old Douglas man is now in jail after he reportedly struck the front of a Douglas Police Department patrol vehicle while allegedly intoxicated at 6:40 a.m. on Monday morning. According to the report, both the victim, a female police officer, and the driver, Miguel Rivera, received "suspected or minor visible injuries" from the crash.
A copy of a Georgia State Patrol report states that on the morning of the wreck, Rivera was traveling south on Wheeler Avenue, approaching Bowens Mill Road. The officer saw Rivera cross the center line and enter the opposite lane of travel. According to the report, Rivera stated that he looked down "due to spilling his drink."
A witness ]reported that Rivera then traveled into his lane, with him having to "take evasive action" to avoid a head-on collision. The witness told troopers he exited the roadway to the right, traveling into the east ditch.
The report states that Rivera then struck the front of the officer's car, a 2021 Dodge Charger. Following the impact, Rivera's vehicle, a 2023 Jeep Gladiator, spun counterclockwise and eventually stopped on the east shoulder of the roadway facing southeast. The patrol car rotated clockwise and stopped in the roadway facing east.
According to the officer, she told troopers she also saw the witness drive onto the shoulder and remembered seeing headlights in her lane prior to the crash.
The officer was taken to Coffee Regional Medical Center by EMS, with Rivera also being taken to the hospital by a patrol car to receive medical attention. According to the report, they both had suspected minor or visible injuries.
The trooper noted that both vehicles received "disabling damage."
Once Rivera was cleared at CRMC, he was taken to the Coffee County Jail to be booked on a variety of charges. According to copies of his warrant, officers found a glass smoking pipe containing suspected methamphetamine, a plastic bag of three Alprazolam pills in his left pant leg, and a small glass jar containing suspected marijuana. He was also found to be intoxicated at the time.
Rivera was charged with possession of methamphetamine, possession of a Schedule IV controlled substance, possession of marijuana less than 1 oz., and DUI. He also received citations for failure to maintain lane, distracted driving, and a seat belt violation.
As of Friday morning, Rivera remained in the Coffee County Jail.
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