It almost seems like a case of “Can you believe this?” Unfortunately, this story is true. A cop pulling a DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) truck sideswiped a legally parked car in the Southern Indiana town of Salem, in Washington County, and then hit a tree.
The crash, which occurred around 10:30 p.m., was loud enough to startle nearby residents Scott and Tina Robbins just as they were about to go to sleep. They saw the damage to the truck and the tree and immediately called 911.
The pickup truck’s driver, John Newcomb, 38, is a police officer with the Seymour Police Department. According to news reports, investigating officers didn’t take long to figure out alcohol was involved. Sources say his blood alcohol content (BAC) was .14, nearly twice the legal limit. Newcomb was arrested by Indiana State Police, charged with operating while intoxicated and booked into the Washington County Jail.
There’s more to the story. Besides being a police officer and pulling the DARE truck identified as Seymour Police Department, Newcomb is heavily involved in drug abuse awareness education with students. The Seymour P.D. website lists Newcomb as the School Resource Officer. He is responsible for seven schools and acts as a mentor and role model for students. To top it off, Newcomb, says the website, lectures on alcohol and narcotics and their effects on driving.
There is no indication where Newcomb came from or where he was going the night of the crash. The officer did have a dog in the pickup truck with him and reportedly told arresting officers the dog distracted him.