A Waynesville man who injured five people while allegedly fleeing the scene of another collision has been hit with numerous charges.
N.C. Highway Patrol Trooper Chad Johnson said Brooks W. Robinson II, 28, left the Cataloochee Ski Area in his black Hyundai after a day on the slopes — a day that included heavy enough drinking to lead to a DWI charge.
“He had some empty containers, 12-ounce cans of India pale ale, in the vehicle,” Johnson said. “There were three empties on floorboard of the vehicle. He also had a ski bag with his ski helmet attached, and inside there was one empty can and two full ones.”
“He was also driving in his ski boots, and then you add being impaired on top of that,” Johnson added.
While Robinson had a six-pack with him, it’s possible he may have consumed other alcohol throughout the day, although that isn’t yet known.
Johnson said when Robinson left the ski area, he allegedly rear-ended a 2008 Toyota Tacoma, then fled the scene.
“He went left of center, passed three to four cars on the left side, then traveled back into the right lane,” he said. “Then he began to pass other vehicles in left lane again and was traveling into an oncoming Cadillac Escalade. He swerved into the right lane, then overcorrected back to the left and hit a silver Ford F-150 head-on.”
Inside the F-150 was a father, mother and their three sons, whose ages ranged from 6 to 14.
Johnson said the 911 call came into the communication center at 4:57 p.m. claiming six people had been injured, including one ejected passenger and a possible entrapment. When Johnson arrived on-scene, he found that no one was ejected from any vehicles and there was no entrapment, but all five occupants of the F-150 were injured to the extent that they were transported to Mission Hospital by ambulance. All five have already been released.
Johnson said Robinson wasn’t wearing a seatbelt but was not ejected. He was taken to Mission with serious but non-life-threatening injuries.
Johnson was unable to say what Robinson’s blood alcohol content was since the blood test is pending, but he did note that charges include driving while impaired, having an opened alcohol container in the vehicle, failure to wear a seatbelt, passing on the double-yellow line, hit and run causing property damage and failure to reduce speed.
While the obvious takeaway here is to not drink and drive, Johnson went even further with his message.
“You don’t think about the consequences until it’s after the fact,” he said. “There are other options out there. Even just call a law enforcement officer and say, ‘I think I’ve had too much to drink and I need a way home.’ I would rather take you home and see you made a good decision versus going to your funeral or someone else’s.”