Accident victim says Hagarty wouldn't call police

Accident victim says Hagarty wouldn't call police
SELAH -- KIMA was the first to talk with Fidel Montes, the victim in Yakima County Prosecutor Jim Hagarty's DUI crash. Montes said Hagarty was not concerned with his well-being and did not call police.

Montes says he was stopped in traffic on Route 823 on Tuesday night, waiting for the stopped car in front of him to turn, when Yakima County Prosecutor Jim Hagarty's truck slammed into him from behind.

"It was terrible," Montes said. "It was real bad."

Montes said Hagarty immediately got out of his truck and started blaming another driver. He did not ask how Montes felt after the crash.

"He said, 'Oh it's the other guy fault in the truck.' And, I said no. It's your fault," Montes said.

Montes then asked Hagarty to call police because he was concerned that his broken English would interfere with the call.

"I tell him call the police, call the police, because you speak English," Montes said. "He didn't want to call the police, so I call the police and I push 911 on my cell phone."

Police ultimately arrested Hagarty on suspicion of DUI. The report from the Washington State Patrol indicates Hagarty failed a field sobriety test. The officer noticed a strong odor of alcohol and bloodshot eyes.

Hagarty later blew into the breathalyzer twice at the Yakima County jail. Both tests registered above the .08 legal limit. One at .109. The other at .106.

Montes said he's happy to walk away from the accident without serious injury, although he is suffering from neck pain. He's also thankful not one of his five children was in the car at the time.

When Montes realized the next day that it was the county prosecutor who hit him, he said, "I think he has a big problem."

We contacted Hagarty's office for a response to Montes' story. Hagarty declined to comment.