Conroe, March 21 – A New Caney man pled guilty for deadly drunk driving crash and fleeing the scene. On Monday, March 20, 2017, Defendant Isaac David Lee Ackley pled guilty to Intoxication Manslaughter and Accident Involving Death (commonly referred to as Failure to Stop and Render Aid) in the 435th District Court and received 15 years in prison in each case, which will be served concurrently. The range of punishment for each charge is 2 to 20 years in prison. Judge Paul Damico, sitting for Judge Patty Maginnis, affirmatively found that the Intoxication Manslaughter charge involved the use of a deadly weapon, which aggravates the offense for the purposes of parole consideration.
In the early morning hours of October 11, 2016, after drinking several beers, the defendant was driving at a high rate of speed down FM 1485 in New Caney. A witness then observed the vehicle slam into the back of an 18- wheeler parked off of the roadway in a gas station parking lot. The vehicle’s passenger, Daniel Gomez, 22, was killed. The defendant then fled the scene with the help of a family member.
The Texas Highway Patrol and Precinct 4 Constable’s office worked together to follow the leads from the crash scene to the defendant’s home where he was found injured in his bed. The Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office Vehicular Crimes Call-Out team responded and assisted DPS in obtaining a blood warrant for Ackley while he was being treated for his injuries at the hospital. Ackley’s blood alcohol concentration was 0.161.
At the time of the crash, Ackley was on two felony probations supervised by the 284th District Court for Harassment of a Public Servant and Assaulting a Public Servant stemming from a 2011 incident where he kicked and spit on two Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office deputies. In November, Judge Patty Maginnis presided over the revocation hearing in the 435th District Court where Assistant District Attorney Lisa Stewart presented evidence of over thirty violations of probation including numerous positive drug tests, admissions to using drugs and alcohol, and the commission of new offenses by Ackley. Evidence presented during that hearing showed that the defendant had been given multiple chances and was in and out of jail for his violations over a four year period, but was never revoked from the court’s probation. On November 15, 2016, Judge Maginnis found that he violated his probation and sentenced Ackley to eight years in prison in each case.
Prosecutor Lisa Stewart: “DPS and Precinct 4 worked tirelessly along with DA Investigator Suzanne Hollifield to build the evidence against the defendant. The hard work of law enforcement led to this substantial prison sentence. But, there are no winners in these cases. A family lost their son, brother, and husband and children lost their father. This plea can’t undo that, but my hope is that in future the punishment range will be increased by the legislature in cases involving intoxicated defendants who flee the scene of a crash.”