ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – A DWI arrest took a very unexpected turn for a pair of deputies from the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Department.
“One of the folks on scene saw what was going on and they thought enough to snap a couple of pictures,” said Sgt. Aaron Williamson.
It happened around midnight on Monday near 4th Street and El Pueblo Road NW in the North Valley.
Deputies said they spotted Jeffrey Salas, 24, driving erratically. They said he was on the wrong side of the road and appeared to be driving drunk with his three kids, all under the age of five, in the car.
“He almost hit me head-on,” said Deputy Roger Garcia. Deputy Sam Rodriguez was called to assist.
According to a criminal complaint, Salas’ 2-month-old and 2-year-old were in the back seat with soiled diapers.
“The 2-month-old was crying and hungry,” Williamson said.
That’s when the deputies stepped into action.
“Both of these individuals have families, and so their fatherly instincts kicked in,” he said.
Salas was arrested and hauled off to jail.
While deputies waited for the Children Youth and Families Department (CYFD) to arrive on scene, they changed the kids’ diapers, fed the baby a bottle and got McDonald’s for the 2-year-old and 5-year-old children.
“A lot of times we forget, you know, cops are just there to arrest people and give citations and answer the 911 calls, but there is that human side, the family side,” Williamson said.
“They were in danger. They could have gotten hurt or killed,” said Garcia.
“When we first pulled him out of the vehicle, the look on the 5-year-old was really distraught. This is her dad,” Rodriguez said.
The three kids are in CYFD custody while authorities investigate.
Salas admitted to taking four shots before getting behind the wheel.