A Hailey man faces a felony DUI charge and two misdemeanors of driving without privileges and of possessing an open container of alcohol following a traffic stop last Tuesday night.
According to a probable-cause affidavit written by Hailey Police Officer Jacy Baird, Baird was patrolling southbound on Woodside Boulevard, south of Laurelwood Drive, when he noticed a vehicle driving southbound on Woodside Boulevard at a high rate of speed around 10:30 p.m. Baird allegedly clocked the SUV going 39 mph in a 25-mph zone and initiated a traffic stop based on speeding.
The driver and sole occupant of the SUV, Juan Noriega, 41, of Hailey, allegedly told Baird he had forgotten his wallet, which contained his driver’s license; instead, Noriega verbally gave Baird his driver’s license number and told him it was issued out of California. After finding no record from the information provided, Baird returned to the SUV to verify the information.
It was during this second interaction that Baird allegedly could “smell the odor of an alcoholic beverage coming from Juan’s breath.” Baird also said that Noriega’s eyes to be bloodshot. When asked if he had consumed any alcohol that evening, Noriega allegedly told Baird that he had not.
After running Noriega’s information a second time, the license number came back as revoked out of California. Following a series of field sobriety tests, Noriega was arrested for suspicion of DUI.
Noriega allegedly refused to take a breathalyzer test, and instead Baird received a warrant to obtain a blood sample. The results had not been returned by the time the probable-cause affidavit was written.
Noriega has five previous DUI convictions—in 2010, 2011, 2013 and two in 2019, all in California.
He is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on July 6, at which time the judge must find sufficient evidence for the felony charge to proceed in District Court along with the misdemeanor charges.