Man sentenced to life in prison for 9th DWI conviction
CONROE, Texas (FOX 26/AP) - A man who was convicted of driving while intoxicated in nine separate incidents since 1980 has been sentenced to life in prison.
A Montgomery County judge spent three days deliberating before he sentenced 56-year-old Houston resident Donald Middleton on Tuesday. The judge said Middleton is a habitual offender.
Middleton pleaded guilty last week to driving drunk in a May 31, 2015 traffic accident. Several of his other convictions also centered around accidents.
"At the time, he was incredibly intoxicated as the deputy testified, when he tried to get out of his vehicle, he actually fell out of his vehicle," said Montgomery County Assistant District Attorney Justin Fowles about Middleton's eighth conviction from a 2008 incident that left a family injured.
Investigators say Middleton was arrested after he crashed a vehicle head-on into another car and ran away from the accident site into a convenience store where he begged the clerks not to turn him in. The teen driving the other car was the son of Montgomery County Precinct 4 Constable 'Rowdy' Hayden.
"I got the phone call that every parent dreads to get, knowing that their teenage driving child has been involved in a serious accident and a ton of emotions go through your mind as you're traveling trying to get to him, make sure he is OK," explained Constable Hayden.
Surveillance video showed Middleton appeared to be intoxicated as he contacted some friends to pick him up from the store.
Prosecutors say Middleton has already served four prison terms for alcohol-related convictions.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.