HARRIS COUNTY, TX (Covering Katy) - Constables say a suspected drunk driver was found asleep in his pickup truck following a collision with a motorcycle on Sunday, March 13, 2022. The crash happened on Highway 6 between West Little York and Clay Roads.
"A short way away, a damaged pickup truck was found stopped in oncoming traffic with the driver asleep at the wheel," said a statement from Constable Ted Heap's office. "Several beer cans and an open container were found inside the vehicle."
Two people riding the motorcycle suffered serious injuries, according to court records.
Juan Christopher Hernandez, 41, was charged with intoxicated assault.
Hernandez has a 2008 conviction for driving while intoxicated. In that case, he served 180 days at the Harris County Jail, was given a year of probation, and paid a $400 fine.
Hernandez is free on bond. He'll be in court today and will likely reveal whether he'll contest the charges.
The Harris County Precinct 5 Constables Office explains their role in the following way:
The Constitution of the Republic of Texas (1836) provided for the election in each county of a sheriff and "a sufficient number of constables." During the ten years of the republic's existence, thirty-eight constables were elected in twelve counties, with the largest number (thirteen) in Harrisburg, later Harris County.
Shortly after Texas became a state, an act passed by the legislature specified that the constable should be "the conservator of the peace throughout the county," adding that "it shall be his duty to suppress all riots, routs, affrays, fighting, and unlawful assemblies, and he shall keep the peace, and shall cause all offenders to be arrested, and taken before some justice of the peace." Constables were the most active law-enforcement officials in many counties during the early statehood of Texas.
The beginning of the Civil War saw the constables' role, as well as their number, dwindle dramatically. Some were absorbed into the Confederate Army and by the end of the war, Texas constables were mostly a thing of the past. In an effort to decentralize control over state government, the Texas Constitution of 1876 mandated that constables would once again be elected at a precinct level.