A head-on collision between an allegedly impaired driver and a Wake County Sheriff’s deputy sent both to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries just hours into the new year.
N.C. State Highway Patrol officials on Monday said they were waiting on test results from blood drawn from Carlos Alberto Moya, 56, of 1800 Fountain Drive, Raleigh, but that they felt confident in what those results would be.
“He was extremely impaired at the time of the collision,” said Lt. Jeff Gordon, spokesman for the Highway Patrol. “I don’t think he was put on the breath test. Blood work was drawn at the hospital.”
The collision took place about 6 a.m. on Jan. 1 near the border of Knightdale and Raleigh, about a quarter mile east of Eastern Wake Fire and Rescue’s station at the intersection of Poole and Grasshopper roads. That department, the Highway Patrol and the Wake County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene.
The Highway Patrol’s preliminary investigation indicated the deputy, 44-year-old Joseph Samuel Coley, was headed west on Poole Road trying to locate a disabled vehicle or possible collision that had been previously reported.
As he neared the 2008 Kia Sedona minivan Moya was driving in the opposite direction on Poole Road, toward Wendell, the van crossed the center line into the oncoming lane, according to the report. State officials reported that Coley quickly braked, turned on his blue lights and attempted to maneuver his 2012 Dodge Charger far enough to the right to avoid a collision, but was unable to do so.
Moya was charged with driving while impaired, driving left of center, failing to wear a seat belt and failing to comply with a drivers license restriction.
Officials said Moya had two prior convictions for driving while impaired, and charged him with violating a drivers license restriction prohibiting him from having any alcohol in his system while operating a vehicle. Moya had a restriction requiring him to have a ignition interlock device in his vehicle that expired Aug. 1, Gordon said.
Moya and Coley were both transported to WakeMed. The deputy was said to have minor injuries to his arm, while Moya had non-life threatening injuries, possibly a broken ankle, and was later listed as being in stable condition, officials said.
Gordon said he was not certain where Moya was coming from or where he was trying to go. He said reports of impaired drivers that far into the next day following a major holiday are not unheard of, but aren’t terribly common.
“A lot of people will drink a lot of alcohol the prior night and even go to sleep for a couple hours, but they consume so much alcohol they get up the next morning and still surpass the legal limit,” Gordon said. “To be grossly impaired, that’s kind of unusual unless they drank very far into the early hours.”