Cedar Park police officer Timothy Wood was arrested for DWI recently at the scene of a collision. Fellow Cedar Park officers were dispatched to report of a driver that hit three vehicles in a parking lot close to midnight at the Ridge Apartments on Wood Hollow Drive. Witnesses on the scene told police that Officer Wood hit one vehicle then reversed and backed into another vehicle while trying to leave and then struck a third vehicle as he continued to drive.
Fellow officers spoke with Officer wood on the scene, smelled a strong odor of alcohol on his breath, noticed that his balance was unsteady, and that his speech was slurred, according to news reports. A spokesman for Cedar Park Police Department confirmed that Officer Wood was arrested and charged with driving while intoxicated.
Perhaps most significant, to my mind as an experienced DWI Defense Attorney, the spokesman confirmed that Officer Wood was a patrol officer. That means Officer Wood routinely investigated and arrested other Cedar Park residents for driving while intoxicated. And now he stands accused of the very same crime for which he has handcuffed and transported people to the Williamson County jail. I will certainly be interested to see how another Police Department chose to investigate this case. Did they seek a search warrant for his blood? Did Officer Wood comply and take the very same breath test he has asked many others to take after he arrested them? Did the arresting officer ask Wood to perform the Field Sobriety Tests? If so did Officer Wood comply with the same request he has given others or did he refuse? If he refused did the arresting officers chastise or try to persuade Wood as many officers do?
In short, did the police investigate one of their own with the same vigor they investigate others? And did Officer Wood do comply in all the ways and do all the things he, as a patrol officer, routinely and regularly asked others to do?
When a police officer, supporter of MADD, and pro-DWI law legislator are arrested for DWI, only then do we really see how committed these folks are to the laws they lobby for, pass, and enforce.
This arrest, as before, truly shows that you do not have to be a bad or horrible person to be accused of driving while intoxicated. It can happen to anyone, under a variety of circumstances.
Now, even with all I have written to this point, I do ask you, the readers, to remember that under the protections given to all of us by the United States Constitution, everyone accused of a crime is innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law at a fair trial by an impartial judge or jury.
Until then, I remain interested primarily in whether the investigation was fair and how Officer Wood reacted to that investigation. Should Officer Wood actually be found guilty or admit guilt, rest assured, I will have more to say at that time.