Domestic dispute allegedly escalated into road rage incident

Jeff Bobo • Mar 29, 2013 at 12:06 PM

CHURCH HILL — Authorities say alcohol added fuel to an already tense situation late Thursday night as a domestic breakup escalated into a road rage incident, sending the suspect to the hospital, and then to jail.

Enrique Santos, 47, 465 Early Branch Road, Rogersville, is accused of ramming a vehicle driven by his ex-girlfriend’s son, Robert Brandon Morelock, same address.

Shortly before 10:30 p.m. Thursday, Santos allegedly drove his 2000 Ford Lincoln into a vehicle driven by Morelock, pushing Morelock’s vehicle through a fence and into a pasture field off of Goshen Valley Road south of Church Hill.

Santos then fled the area south and crashed 1.5 miles away on Goshen Valley Road near the Mountain View Road intersection.

When HCSO Deputy Reba Matthews arrived on the scene she reportedly found the Lincoln over an embankment in a creek.

“It originated as a domestic situation,” said HCSO Detective Lt. Eve Jackson.

“Mr. Santos had assaulted the victim’s mother the previous night, and apparently they were breaking up. At the time of this incident the suspect (Santos) was leaving the area, and the victim (Morelock) was making sure he left the area, or verifying that he left the area.

“We don’t believe there was any provocation on the part of the victim. Mr. Santos’ actions were fueled by anger and alcohol.”

Santos allegedly admitted he’d been to a club in Johnson City prior to the incident. Matthews stated in her report Santos smelled of alcohol and performed poorly on field sobriety tests.

Santos was treated and released from the Hawkins County Memorial Hospital for neck and head pain.

He was then booked into the Hawkins County Jail on charges including reckless endangerment, DUI, leaving the scene of an accident, driving without a license, no proof of insurance, violation of the Implied Consent Law and filing a false report for allegedly giving Matthews an incorrect date of birth.

As of Thursday evening, Santos remained held in the Hawkins County Jail on $3,750 bond with arraignment set for Monday.

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