SALEM, IN (WAVE) – A police officer is facing drunk driving charges in Washington County, Indiana and the arresting officers say he was carrying a message about drug abuse education at the time.
On Wednesday night around 10:30 p.m. Scott and Tina Robbins were just about to go to sleep.
"It was so loud," said Mrs. Robbins. "I was out of the bed on the floor within a spilt second."
They heard a crash right outside their window. "I grabbed the phone and called 911," said Mr. Robbins. "The damage to the truck and the way it looked wrapped in the tree, he had to be traveling so fast."
Indiana State Police say 38-year-old John Newcomb, a Seymour Police Officer, was driving a pick up truck through Salem on Main Street.
"He side swiped a vehicle that was legally parked on the side of the roadway," said Sgt. Jerry Goodin, ISP. "After striking that vehicle, he went on and struck a tree."
It didn't take long for investigators to suspect alcohol was involved.
"He was sitting on the wall out of the vehicle, holding his head," said Mrs. Robbins. But that wasn't the only thing that stood out to the Robbins, it was the trailer Newcomb was pulling.
"It said DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) and Seymour Police Department- which made me think he was a police officer," said Mr. Robbins.
Not only a police officer, but according to the Seymour Police Department website, he is the School Resource Officer, responsible for seven schools, acting as a mentor and providing students with a role model. It even states that he conducts lectures on narcotics and alcohol and their effects on driving.
"He's not setting a good example for kids that see this," said Mr. Robbins.
Newcomb, who refused medical treatment after the crash, is charged with operating while intoxicated and was booked in the Washington County Jail.
Newcomb had a dog in the truck with him. He told police the dog distracted him and that's what caused the crash. We are still waiting to hear back from Seymour Police about the current status of his job.