Man driving mom's car blamed in homeless man's death

Carlton Jay Eberle, 26, is charged with accident involving injury as well as driving while intoxicated.

March 3, 2011 12:21:37 PM PST
An alleged drunk driver who police say took his mother's car without permission and fatally struck a homeless man has been arrested and charged in connection with the victim's death.

Carlton Jay Eberle is charged with accident involving injury as well as driving while intoxicated. Police say a homeless man had just left a local bar and was crossing the street in the 1700 block of State Highway 6 about 11:20pm on Wednesday when he was struck by a red Mitsubishi Outlander, driven by Eberle, southbound on Highway 6. Eberle fled the scene on foot and was later taken into custody by HPD Westside Patrol Division officers in a nearby neighborhood .

Police told us the man had been drinking all day, and hopped into the SUV when his mother left it running in their driveway.

"He is intoxicated. DWI officers have come to the scene giving a field sobriety test," said Sgt. I. Izaguirre with the Houston Fire Department.

According to witnesses, Eberle, 26, was driving erratically prior to the accident.

Investigators say Eberle took the vehicle to allegedly buy drugs not far from the crash scene.

The identity of the male victim, 53, who was pronounced dead at the scene, is pending verification by the Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences.