For 17 years Moses Perez worked at the Fort Bend Sheriff's Office, most recently as a detective. On Wednesday morning he walked in one more time, this time to surrender on a charge of intoxication manslaughter.
The charge stems from a deadly crash last October on the feeder road of I-10. He was westbound, just after midnight, on his motorcycle near Pin Oak. Fellow investigator and ex-wife Shelly Nicodemus was a passenger on the bike. When it struck the divider both were thrown. Both were wearing helmets. Nicodemus died at the scene. Perez was rushed by medical helicopter to the hospital.
"It's very hard for him to even discuss these things," said Chad Dick, attorney for Perez. "He is very emotional."
Tests taken an hour after the wreck show Perez's blood alcohol content at .146, nearly twice the legal limit. Only now, more than five months after the wreck, has Perez been indicted, a grand jury doing so just Monday. Katy police say part of the delay was due to a need to have an independent agency, in this case, the Department of Public Safety, investigate a case involving Perez, whom they knew.
His attorney says intoxication manslaughter can't be proven here. Chad Dick tells us Perez claims he was attempting to avoid an oncoming vehicle that night, and that he hit the divider while trying to move out of the way for that car. Further, Dick says, the divider is poorly marked and unlit at night.
"It's clear that the accident was not caused by, if any, intoxication," Dick explained.
The Fort Bend Sheriff's Office says Perez quit just last month rather than being fired by the sheriff's office. Perez is out of custody, awaiting trial, on his own recognizance. If convicted, he could face up to 20 years in prison.