UHP: Wrong-Way I-15 Driver In Snowstorm Was Drunk

Dec 29, 2020, 2:35 PM

CEDAR CITY, Utah – A Utah Highway Patrol trooper arrested an alleged drunk driver going the wrong way on Interstate 15 during a snowstorm Tuesday morning.

The trooper arrested 52-year-old Shane Daniel Coles and booked him into the Beaver County Jail. Coles had two previous DUI charges within the last 10 years and many other previous charges, according to a probable cause statement.

A snowplow driver called authorities after reporting a reckless vehicle traveling southbound in the northbound lanes of I-15 just after midnight Tuesday. It was snowing hard and the roads were icy and covered in snow according to court documents.

“The plow driver advised me the car appeared to try to run into his plow at least twice. The plow driver stated the car was all over the roadway, from shoulder to shoulder and spinning in circles,” the court document said. Another person reported the reckless car after it almost ran them off the road.

The arresting trooper caught up to Coles. “I observed the vehicle swerve toward an oncoming semi-truck and trailer. Causing the truck to swerve, barely missing the reckless vehicle. The semi appeared to struggle to regain control of the truck, and almost jackknifed on the interstate.” The officer pulled in front of Coles and he stopped in front of the patrol car.

The trooper got out of his car and Coles revved the engine and tried to shift it into gear. However, the officer managed to get Coles out of the car.

“After having him exit the vehicle I could smell a very overwhelming odor of an alcoholic beverage coming from him as I spoke to him. He appeared to have urinated on himself, and he wasn’t able to stand up on his own without almost falling over,” the affidavit said.

Coles appeared to be very disoriented, tired and dazed, the trooper said. He said it was a struggle to keep Coles awake and standing upright.

The document said the officer arrested Coles for DUI. “I place him inside my patrol car and he almost immediately fell asleep.”

Coles admitted to drinking several beers in Beaver and told the officer he was going to see his girlfriend in Cedar City, the affidavit said.

According to court documents, Coles had three outstanding warrants.

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UHP: Wrong-Way I-15 Driver In Snowstorm Was Drunk