Officers who visited driver accused in deputy's death at hospital say suspect smelled of alcohol

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A suspected drunk driver accused of killing a Precinct 7 deputy constable was granted bond after failing to appear at his court hearing Monday.

A judge found probable cause against 36-year-old Adolfo Serrano, the driver accused of being intoxicated when he crashed with Deputy Constable Jennifer Chavis over the weekend. Serrano's bond was set at $750,000 despite prosecutors asking for no bond.

"I don't know what [Serrano's] current license status is, but the fact that back in the day he continued to drive without a valid Texas driver's license does make me question to what extent Mr. Serrano would follow pre-trial bond conditions," a judge said Monday.

On Saturday, Chavis was trying to pull over the driver and was waiting in a fully marked patrol car on the side of the 7200 block of the South Sam Houston Parkway at Fondren, according to the sheriff's office.
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"He hit a wall and is now driving. Still, it's going to be a white work truck," a 911 dispatcher was heard saying on Rangecast audio.

Serrano was driving a Ford F-550 when he failed to drive in a single lane and hit Chavis in the rear, according to deputies.

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Chavis's patrol car caught on fire. A witness who recorded video of the deputy's car in flames said she heard a big bang before seeing black smoke.

On Monday, officers told ABC13 they had gone to the hospital to meet with Serrano and said his breath smelled like alcohol, in addition to "red eyes and slurred speech."

According to authorities, Serrano admitted to officers that he had an alcoholic beverage prior to the crash.

"The defendant admitted to striking a vehicle he thought was stalled on the shoulder and the car instantly burst into flames," authorities said.

Officers were able to get a blood search warrant on Serrano.

The 32-year-old was a deputy with Precinct 7 for a year and half.

She leaves behind a husband, a 4-year-old son and an 11-year-old nephew who she was also raising.

Court documents show Serrano had a prior DWI conviction out of Brazoria County back in 2014. He was also convicted of assaulting a family member in Fort Bend County in 2009.

According to Serrano's defense attorney, the suspect has lived in the same house in the Fort Bend area for the past 15 years with his four children who allegedly depend on his support. His attorney also added that Serrano has worked as a mechanic for the past six years.

The conditions of his bond include no weapons, no driving, no alcohol. Serrano was also placed under house arrest and must wear a GPS monitor. A breathalyzer device must be installed in his car and has a curfew of 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
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