A West Tawakoni woman, accused of driving a Hunt County Sheriff’s Office patrol vehicle into a tree, was granted an occupational license Wednesday.

But Tiffany Bates’ arraignment hearing in the Hunt County Court-at-Law was postponed until 9 a.m. March 26, at which time a “confirmation of discovery” hearing has been scheduled.

Normally at a discovery hearing, the prosecution presents all the evidence they have against a defendant and the decision is made whether to go forward with a case.

Following her court appearance, Bates said she was frustrated her court date had been reset to the end of March because she wants to be able to move forward with her life. She said the lingering DWI charge is hindering her efforts. Bates said she was ready to plead “not guilty” Wednesday to the DWI charges she is facing stemming from a Dec. 4 patrol vehicle accident.

Bates was the subject of the Feb. 19 “Shattered Justice” story in the Herald-Banner, which told of her arrest earlier this month following a Department of Public Safety investigation. The investigating officer had placed her behind the wheel that night of her now ex-boyfriend and former patrol deputy’s law enforcement vehicle. DPS officers say Bates, under the influence of alcohol, drove the car into a tree less than a mile from her home.

Bates has insisted she was at home at the time of the accident, and her ex-boyfriend was behind the wheel. She said area law enforcement officials are trying to blame the accident on her and have wrongly charged and arrested her for the crime. She has also alleged misconduct against several law enforcement officials involved in the incident that night.

Because Bates refused to take a sobriety test the night she was brought in for questioning, the Department of Public Safety had suspended her license in January — making it illegal for her to drive.

The occupational li-cense will allow Bates to legally drive between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. She hopes the occupational license will allow her to get the job back that she was forced to resign from because of the DWI charges.

Trending Video

Recommended for you