Thatcher man arrested for DUI after hit-and-run collision

By Jon Johnson

SAFFORD/THATCHER – Jack Dawson, 37, was arrested for aggravated DUI and leaving the scene of an accident after a hit-and-run collision on Saturday, Dec. 12.

According to a Safford Police report, authorities were initially dispatched at about 5:17 p.m. to the intersection of U.S. Highway 70 and 5th Avenue regarding a collision. Upon arrival, officers were advised that a Dodge Ram had made a left hand turn from 5th Avenue onto the highway and merged into a lane that was occupied by another vehicle and struck it.

The Dodge Ram then fled from the scene at a high rate of speed, and while the second vehicle attempted to follow, the Dodge went out of sight.

Shortly afterward, a Thatcher officer observed a vehicle matching the description of the hit-and-run vehicle traveling north on Reay Lane. The officer reported the Dodge began to speed on 1st Street but the officer followed and located the truck parked at an address on Eagle Meadow Lane with Dawson behind the wheel.

The Thatcher officer asked Dawson if he had been involved in a hit-and-run, and Dawson allegedly replied “put me in handcuffs.” A records check showed Dawson’s driver’s license to be suspended for failure to pay fines and a prior DUI conviction, according to the Safford officer’s report.

An open bottle of liquor was found in the truck, and Dawson exhibited several signs of intoxication, including bloodshot, watery eyes, and a strong odor of alcohol.

Dawson was placed under arrest for aggravated DUI and leaving the scene of an accident and was transported to the Safford Police Department. There, his blood was taken for testing purposes. He was then transported back to the residence on Eagle Meadow Lane and released. Possible DUI and leaving the scene of an accident charge are pending lab test analysis of his blood and review by prosecutors.