Accused drunk driver busted after accidental call to 911 - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Accused drunk driver busted after accidental call to 911

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HAMILTON COUNTY, TN. (WRCB)--An accused drunk driver was busted after an accidental call to 911.

A dispatcher took the call, around 3 am Saturday, and could hear people laughing about being too drunk to drive.

Instead of hanging up, she led police to the man behind the wheel.

Mis-dials are part of the job but this call got the attention of a third-shift dispatcher.

On the 911 call you can hear the conversation.

Passenger:"Are you okay to drive?"
Driver: "Hello."
Passenger: "You promise me?"
Driver: "Uh Huh."
Passenger: "You've got my life riding with you."

The dispatcher tries to get the caller's attention, but all you hear is arguing about who is sober enough to drive.

Police say Domingo Baltazar got behind the wheel.

You can hear his passengers protest.

Passenger: "Tell him to put the beer down, he's driving."
Passenger 2: "Yeah put the beer down."
Driver: "Shh."

The call lasts 10 minutes. Instead of hanging up, the dispatcher listens for clues.

Using mapping software the dispatcher was able to pinpoint the location of the vehicle here on Hixson pike and alert police.

"They talked about what kind of car one of them was going to be in and which direction they were heading and she was able to relay that information to police officers," says John Stuermer, Hamilton County 911 Executive Director.

Meanwhile, Baltazar plans his next alcohol purchase.

Passenger: "They stop selling beer at 3."
Driver: "Better hurry."
Passenger: "Its 3:05 babe."

But he never makes it to the store.

Police pull him over after spotting his swerving vehicle.

"Sure enough that party was very intoxicated," says Stuermer.

And capable of causing a serious accident.

Stuermer says his dispatcher should be commended.

"She stayed with it and that's what we want our people to do is go that extra mile," says Stuermer.

The dispatcher has been recommended for employee of the year because of her quick thinking. 

As for Baltazar, he faces charges for DUI, driving without a license and with an open container.

This isn't his first alcohol-related arrest, two years ago police picked him for public intoxication.

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