An East Texas Sheriff's Deputy has found himself on the other side of the law, after he flipped his truck with 3 teenagers, alcohol, and drugs inside. 26-year old Rains County Sheriff's Deputy John Wallace was immediately fired and faces a list of charges.
Wallace was off-duty and in his personal truck when the accident happened early Thursday morning along FM 779 outside Emory. Now, the Rains County Sheriff's Department is hoping a state-led investigation will shed light on this twisted turn of events that involves one of their own.
"You trust your officers to do their job," said Sheriff David Traylor, Rains County.
But instead of upholding the law, authorities said 26-year old John Wallace was breaking it. Carrying 4 other passengers, 3 of them teenagers, Wallace flipped his Chevy truck while allegedly driving drunk outside Emory.
Also inside, an evidence envelope of marijuana that Sheriff Traylor said Wallace confiscated a month earlier from one of the passengers but never documented.
"This puts a black mark on all of us that are out there trying to do the job," said Sheriff Traylor.
Wallace, a deputy of 5 years, now faces two felonies: tampering with evidence and intoxication assault - plus, possession of a controlled substance and 3 counts of contributing to a minor.
"It's lucky on his part everybody survived the accident," said Sheriff Traylor. "Right now, we're looking at some serious enough charges but had there been a death in it, then the charges would've been extremely serious and there would've been a hurt in the community."
Sheriff Traylor said there were never any signs of a problem with Wallace.
"I couldn't believe it. He'd been such a hard worker and a gung-ho officer. Something snapped or changed him."
Sheriff Traylor said Wallace is being transferred to a rehab clinic and suffered some broken bones from the accident. Fortunately, no one involved suffered major injuries. But as for Wallace's law enforcement career in Rains County, Sheriff Traylor said that is finished.
"Even if you're in law enforcement, you break the law, and you need to suffer the consequences," said Sheriff Traylor.
The Texas Rangers are investigating, and are waiting on blood samples to see who involved in the incident had been drinking or smoking marijuana.