A man is accused of Intoxication Manslaughter with a Vehicle after colliding with another vehicle on a Texas highway.
A Coryell County deputy was dispatched to a two-vehicle crash on July 19, 2018.
One of the vehicles involved was a 2016 white Dodge Journey driven by a man identified as Cory Ryan Ruiz. The second vehicle involved was a 2015 grey Toyota Corolla, with Miten Kirit Patel identified as the driver.
The Journey was traveling eastbound on SH-36 going towards Temple. The Corolla was traveling westbound on SH-36 going towards Gatesville.
Witnesses said they saw the Journey driving in a reckless manner, such as cutting other vehicles off of the road and swerving from lane to lane. The Journey then drove on the wrong side of the road and colliding with the Corolla, which was traveling in the proper lane.
Ruiz was trapped inside the Journey, which caught on fire after the collision. Witnesses on the scene pulled Ruiz out of the burning vehicle and carried him to safety. A witness went to check on Patel inside the Corolla, saying Patel was unresponsive and had no pulse. Patel was later pronounced dead at the scene.
EMS personnel on the scene smelled the odor of a consumed alcoholic beverage coming from Ruiz. Ruiz was transported by helicopter to Baylor Scott and White – Temple, where a Temple trooper went to speak with him.
Ruiz claimed he was not under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and says he just fell asleep. The trooper could not smell an odor of alcohol due to the sterile hospital environment, but administered the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN) on Ruiz and observed six clues.
When Ruiz was asked to provide a blood specimen, he denied. The trooper received Ruiz’s medical records, which showed results of abnormal levels of Ethanol in his blood at the time of his admission to the hospital.
The trooper was able to reach the conclusion Ruiz had a BAC of 0.164 at the time of his admission to the hospital. Ruiz also reported to the intake staff he consumed alcohol that night. The trooper believes Ruiz was operating a motor vehicle in a public space while intoxicated and accidentally caused another’s death.
Ruiz has since been arrested and is accused of Intoxication Manslaughter with a Vehicle. He is being held at the Coryell County Jail with bond set at $50,000.
Source: Coryell County Sheriff’s Office