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The driver of the pickup truck that drove through a Native American parade in New Mexico on Thursday, injuring 15 people, has been charged with drunk driving after his blood-alcohol level was found to be three times the limit. lawful, police said.
Jeff Irving, 33, was booked into the McKinley County Jail on a long list of criminal charges stemming from the Gallup Inter-Tribal Ceremonial Parade incident, including aggravated DWI, 15 counts of leaving the scene of an accident and possession of a open container, according to police.
The crash left 15 people injured, including two Gallup police officers identified as Gilbert Gonzales and Elijah Bowman. No deaths were reported.
Arrested and Charged
According to court documents cited by station KOAT, Irving, whose rap sheet includes a previous DWI arrest, admitted to police that he had been drinking alcohol prior to the incident.
Irving said that he was watching the parade in Gallup with his brothers, but then they decided to leave.
The accused driver, Jeff Irving, was charged with aggravated DWI after breaking into a ceremonial parade in Gallup, New Mexico.
Officers comfort a fellow police officer at the scene of the car incident.
Footage shows Jeff Irving allegedly driving his brown Chevy Tahoe towards onlookers.
Video taken by witnesses shows the brown Chevy Tahoe Irving speeding the wrong way down the parade route, causing children performing traditional dances to flee for their lives.
Amid chaos and panicked screams from bystanders, the vehicle swerved onto a side street and pulled into a parking spot before attempting to pull out again, striking a police car. Officers then converge on the vehicle, pull out at least two people and handcuff them on the pavement.
The officers who arrested Irving administered field sobriety tests to him and concluded that he was allegedly incapacitated.
According to court documents, the 33-year-old man was given two breath tests and blew 0.24. In New Mexico, it is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol concentration of .08.
Police stated that Irving was also found to be driving on a revoked license due to a previous DWI and with no proof of insurance. The SUV’s registration had expired.
Among those injured in the incident were two Gallup police officers, the New Mexico State Police said in a tweet.
Police did not say whether they suspected the driver intentionally collided with people or whether they thought he was incapacitated and didn’t know they were there. Videos taken by bystanders showed a large brown sport utility vehicle speeding through Gallup’s Intertribal Ceremonial Parade as dancers and spectators dispersed.