Some of you may have read about 21-year old Dennis Coburn from the Summerdale area who has been listed as the suspect who rammed into a Baldwin County deputy early Saturday morning. The Crash looks like significant impact with the deputy’s cruiser taking the brunt of the energy from the much larger truck.
From the news reports it appears that this was no motor vehicle accident, as Coburn is alleged to have rammed the deputy, crashed out, then flee the scene on foot.
The incident occurred around 1 am Saturday morning, after a Baldwin County sheriff’s deputy witnessed a white Ford truck commit a traffic infraction. Reports indicate Coburn ran a 4-way stop at the intersection of County Roads 87 and 32. The deputy attempted to stop Coburn, when Coburn fled.
The Baldwin County Sheriff’s Office issued a press release:
“As the Deputy approached the vehicle attempted to head north and then rammed the Deputy head on. The suspect jumped from the vehicle and fled on foot,” said a BCSO News Release.
Of course this is not Coburn’s first run in with the authorities. He pled guilty by means of an information pursuant to Ala. Code 15-15-20.1 (1975) to a felony charge of Criminal Mischief, 1st Degree.
An information is an alternative charging instrument made under oath of the district attorney or a witness, and accuses the defendant with the same specificity as required in an indictment of the offense or offenses for which the defendant is charged) It is a quick and expedient way to reach a resolution to a criminal charge between the accused and the State.
In his pretrial diversion application, Coburn was required to give a statement of facts and his culpability in the charged offense. He allocuted as follows:
In exchange for his guilty plea, Coburn was allowed to enter into a pretrial diversion program for three years with the Baldwin County District Attorney’s office. Provided he was not arrested for any new offense, paid restitution, and paid the costs of court among other conditions, his case would be nolle prossed with no criminal conviction.
Then, 2017 arrived and with it a new City of Foley DUI arrest for Coburn. The State then moved to adjudicate him (revoke his pretrial diversion program).
Ultimately the judge sent him to jail and ordered him to complete 40 hours of community service. Coburn was released from jail on April 23, 2017. On June 22, 2017, Coburn’s completion of community service was filed with the Court.
Coburn remained at large for over 24 hours.
Coburn will face charges for assault, 2nd degree and attempting to elude police. Leaving the Scene of an Accident with injuries may be an additional appropriate charge.
It has just been reported by WKRG that Coburn has turned himself in today at the Robertsdale Police Department:
I hope for the deputy’s sake that Coburn has automobile insurance, as restitution for our law enforcement officers in cases like this (in addition to the worker’s compensation coverage) will certainly help in the recovery and rehabilitation process. We do not yet know the extent of the deputy’s injuries, but the crime scene picture indicates a significant impact.
Exactly why Coburn fled the scene is a mystery. Prayers are with deputy and his family for a speedy recovery.
Point of Interest:
A quick scan of Coburn’s Facebook page reveal posts encouraging Coburn to turn himself in.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Matt Green is a solo practitioner who represents personal injury and victims of criminal wrongdoing. He represents members of law enforcement injured by drunk and careless drivers. He served as a municipal court traffic court judge in the City of Mobile and the City of Saraland for nearly a decade. Before that Matt prosecuted major felonies, traffic homicides, and violent crimes in the Baldwin County District Attorney’s Office. He teaches trial advocacy to Mobile Police Cadets and speaks to the Mobile County Court Referral Victim Impact Panel. Matt also defends the constitutional rights of his clients. He may be reached at 251.434.8500 or by e-mail at email@example.com
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