Walton County, GA (WSB) - A sheriff's deputy near Atlanta is out of work after allegedly crashing his patrol car while under the influence and then running away from the scene.
Police say the Gwinnett County sheriff's deputy was off duty when the crash happened.
His girlfriend was also in the car at the time.
Witness Justin Lamar says, "See it from where he originally left the roadway, traveled a pretty good distance and landed here..."
Lamar says he saw when he pulled up on the wrecked patrol car along Highway 81 early Wednesday. It had skidded off the road, hit and embankment and flipped over. He said he was stunned when rushed to the car and found it empty.
"Immediately we were concerned of the injury that may have occurred we weren't sure if he had been ejected in the course of the crash, so we started looking everywhere making sure nobody was in a ditch," Lamar explains.
State Troopers arrested 27-year-old Robert Matt at his home late charging him with driving under influence, and leaving the scene of an accident. After he bonded out of jail, we went to his home to try to get a comment, but no one answered. The Gwinnett Sheriff's Office says Matt was off duty and in civilian clothes at the time of the crash. A female passenger, identified as Katie Lynn, was injured.
Considering the wrecked condition of this patrol car, it's amazing that the deputy and his passenger weren't more seriously hurt. They may have been protected by a roll bar.
The Georgia State Patrol said a trooper drew blood from the former deputy for an alcohol test and that the results will not be back for several weeks.
Matt had been a Gwinnett County Sheriff's deputy for four years and resigned after the crash.
During that time, police say he'd had a good work record, and even saved the life of an inmate who tried to commit suicide.
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