JASPER COUNTY, GA. - The Deputy Commissioner with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources was arrested and charged with DUI after crashing into a traffic sign, then into an embankment.
The crash happened on Sunday, Nov. 19 on SR 11 near mile marker 25 in Jasper County.
A sheriff's deputy and Georgia State Patrol trooper responded to the scene and found the driver, Walter Rabon, Jr., in a 2015 Chevrolet Corvette. Police said the car belongs to Patrick Hammonds.
A passenger in the vehicle named Jen Hammonds was taken to the Clearview Regional Hospital. No word on her condition.
Police found nine jars of what was suspected to be moonshine in the car behind the driver and passenger seats. Five of the jars were damaged from the crash. Rabon told police the jars were not his.
Officers said they smelled alcohol on Rabon's breath. One of the officers noted in the incident report Rabon's eyes were bloodshot, watery, and he was not wearing any shoes.
An officer called Rabon's responses "sluggish" saying, he initially told him had one drink at home, then changed his statement saying he had two drinks around 7:30 p.m.
After several failed attempts, Police said Rabon eventually blew a .146 during a breath test.
He was arrested and charged with DUI and failure to maintain lane.
The moonshine was released to the Jasper County Sheriff's Office for further investigation.
The Georgia Department of Natural Resources released the following statement:
“We are aware of the incident and take the matter very seriously. He has been placed on administrative leave and we are conducting an internal investigation.”
The Georgia Department of Revenue is also investigating, but would not say why:
"The Department does have an open investigation into the matter. Until the investigation has been closed, the Department has no further comment."
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