A Gwinnett County sheriff’s deputy is accused of crashing a county vehicle while under the influence and leaving the scene.
A Georgia State Patrol representative said a trooper was sent to Highway 81 at Double Springs Road in Walton County at 1:20 a.m. Wednesday. A Gwinnett County Sheriff’s Department vehicle had gone off an embankment and overturned several times.
GSP said no one was in the crashed car, but a female passenger was found walking near the area. The driver, a Gwinnett deputy, was located at his home with cuts and bruises.
Robert Christopher Matt, 27, was charged with DUI, leaving the scene, open container violation and failing to maintain his lane. He was taken to the Walton County Jail. The Sheriff's Department said Matt was not on duty during the crash.
Matt’s passenger, 27-year-old Katie Lynn, was taken to the Gwinnett Medical Center for treatment of injuries. Her condition is unclear.
Witness Justin Jamar said he was coming home from work when he came across the wrecked vehicle.
“Not every day you walk up to a police vehicle overturned and no one in it,” Jamar told Channel 2’s Tom Regan. "We weren't sure if he had been ejected for the vehicle during the crash so we started looking everywhere, making sure no one was in a ditch or anything.”
The Sheriff's Department said Matt, who was hired in 2008, has resigned since the arrest. Sheriff Butch Conway said that he was highly disappointed in the actions of Matt, who had a good work record with several commendations that included the Life Saving Award for his quick action in saving an inmate’s life who attempted suicide.