The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Crime & Courts

January 9, 2014

Arkansas man to stand trial in DWI accident

A Jasper County judge ordered a 27-year-old Arkansas man bound over for trial Thursday on a charge of vehicular assault in connection with an accident Aug. 2 on Missouri Highway 171 west of Carthage.

Associate Judge Richard Copeland after a preliminary hearing in Jasper County Circuit Court in Joplin found probable cause for Adam C. Garner, of Fayetteville, to stand trial on a charge of second-degree assault by operating a vehicle while intoxicated and being involved in an injury accident.

“It was just like that,” Webb City resident Tony Triplett testified, snapping his fingers to describe how fast the car Garner was driving had come up behind his vehicle about a mile west of Carthage.

Garner’s vehicle struck the rear of his car and sent it into a spin before striking it a second time and propelling it into a ditch, Triplett told the court. He suffered injuries to his shoulder and back — for which he was treated at the emergency room of Freeman Hospital West in Joplin and released — but no injuries requiring continuing care, he said.

Trooper Joseph Fischer of the Missouri State Highway Patrol testified that he found Garner’s car resting on its top in the southbound lanes, and Garner sitting in the median of the highway when he arrived on the scene. He said Garner smelled of alcohol and failed field sobriety tests.

Garner told him that he had been at a bachelor party at a lake and admitted having had too much to drink, Fischer told the court. Later, the defendant consented to a breath test that showed a blood-alcohol content of 0.154 percent, almost twice the state’s legal threshold for driving while intoxicated of 0.08 percent.

The judge set Garner’s initial appearance in a trial division of the court for Feb. 3.

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