Michael Agee Killed, Jasper Black Sr., 3 Injured in Car Accident on N.E. Loop 323 in Tyler, TX
UPDATE (January 23, 2024): Additional details from authorities identified the man killed in the accident as 66-year-old Michael Agee. Authorities also identified one of the people involved in the crash as 63-year-old Jasper Black Sr. Details suggest that Black and three others who weren't identified had moderate injuries due to the accident. Right now, no further information can be confirmed.
Tyler, TX — January 11, 2024, a man was fatally injured as the result of a two-car accident at around 11:24 p.m. on Northeast Loop 323.
There are few details available at this time. Authorities have said only that they were called to the eastbound lanes of N.E. Loop 323 in the area of North Broadway Avenue.
It appears that a Chevy Tahoe and a Dodge pickup crashed with one another. One person involved, currently identified only as a 66-year-old man, sustained fatal injuries. It's unclear if anyone else was hurt. The cause of the crash remains unconfirmed, but authorities mentioned that alcohol "may have contributed to the crash." If that turns out to be true, it sadly wouldn't be surprising.
Simply put, the numbers are clear that late night and early morning hours are dangerous because a lot of drivers on the road are intoxicated. Of the hundreds of cases where I helped families harmed by drunk drivers, almost all of them were around the same hours because that's when people were leaving a bar that illegally over-served them.
If authorities have their suspicions, I hope they go one step further and try to track down its source. Bartenders can face criminal penalties for over-serving people who go on to hurt themselves or others. The bar or restaurant can also face administrative and civil consequences when they don't follow the rules.
The unfortunate reality is that far too many times, investigators are content with arresting and charging the alleged drunk driver, then call it a day. Why? Prosecuting a drunk driver is easy. Tracking down a bartender or bar requires a little legwork. Then what do prosecutors get for their trouble? Not much. Juries generally don't like cases against bartenders; the press doesn't report on the prosecution; and voters don't factor it into their thinking when it comes time to vote for district attorney.
As a result, the same bad bars aren't held accountable and keep creating drunks who go out and kill themselves or others on our roads. The only way to stop the cycle is to go after the source. It should be second nature for bartenders and alcohol providers to stop service once it's apparent that someone has had too much. Until it is, we'll never really get a handle on the drunk driving problem in Texas.