MILWAUKEE (WITI) – A woman says she was arrested for drunk driving after a deputy ran a stop sign, causing a violent crash.
Tanya Weyker said, “My reputation is everything to me.”
On Feb. 20, Milwaukee County Deputy Sheriff Joseph Quiles was working the night shift when he pulled onto a street and T-boned Weyker’s car.
Her vehicle came to rest after hitting a tree.
Weyker suffered a broken neck in four places.
She said, “It was a miracle I wasn’t paralyzed.”
As rescue workers tried to get her into an ambulance, sheriff’s deputies started asking if she had anything to drink.
Weyker said, “I told them I had a few sips from a friend’s drink.”
Officers say her speech was slurred and her eyes looked red and glassy.
She said, “I explained to him my eyes were red and glassy because I was crying.”
Her injuries were too severe to allow for any field sobriety tests.
In fact, she was suffering so much she couldn’t even do a breathing sample.
Deputies then began asking about prescription drugs.
Weyker said, “I just got my wisdom teeth pulled out, so they gave me Vicodin for that. I told them it was little over a week since I took the Vicodin.”
Despite that, deputies arrested Weyker on five separate charges including drunk driving causing injury.
She said, “They made me into this criminal.”
Todd Korb, Weyker’s attorney, said, “I can’t say it is necessarily a cover up but it is suspicious.”
In the official report, Quiles wrote that he stopped at the stop sign and looked both ways before pulling into the street.
The county sent letters to Weyker, blaming her for the crash and threatening legal action if she did not pay.
Less than a month after the crash, test results showed she had no alcohol in her system.
A short time after that, drug tests came back negative.
Five months later, a prosecutor looked at the case and declined to file charges.
Officials learned there was surveillance footage that showed Quiles’ squad car turning onto the street without making a complete stop.
Experts say the sheriff’s office knew about the video just two days after the crash but continued to try and press charges.
In fact, an internal investigation was ordered 10 months after the accident.
In an interview with an investigator, Quiles admitted that he probably rolled the stop sign and that he was at fault for the crash.
He was officially suspended for nine days for violating traffic laws and damaging county equipment.
However, he was never disciplined for the inaccurate report.
Weyker said, “I think he was trying to protect himself and his department, to be honest.”
Weyker says she is still waiting for the county to pay her medical bills.
Korb says those bills could top $1 million but state law puts a cap of $250,000 on claims against government agencies.
Weyker has filed a separate complaint against the deputy who arrested her, which could lead to a lawsuit against the county.
Quiles has not worked for more than a year since the crash.
He is filing for permanent disability for injuries he suffered in the crash.
According to reports, Quiles suffered only minor injuries and was “treated and released.”