Off-duty DeSoto County sheriff's deputy arrested for DUI refusal

HERNANDO, MS (WMC-TV) - A DeSoto County sheriff's deputy is out on bond after he was arrested over the weekend for refusing to take a DUI test.

Early Sunday morning in Walls, the off-duty deputy was involved in an accident that left a woman injured.

"A female was going southbound and our deputy was turning off of 61 onto Delta View," DeSoto County Sheriff Bill Rasco said. "He made a turn in front of her and she hit him on the passengers side."

Rasco said Louis Jerome Hamm was arrested and charged with DUI refusal and having no tag or proof of insurance. An internal investigation is underway.

"We'll be through with the investigation by this time next week," Rasco said. "He has been relieved from duty without pay."

Rasco said the woman driving the other car was heading to work at one of the casinos when the accident occurred. She has a broken leg.

Highway 61 is a very busy stretch of road. which keeps officers busy.

"With the casinos just to the south of us, you know, people go down there, spend their money, gamble, and get free alcohol," he said.

Hamm is the second DeSoto County deputy arrested on DUI-related charges since Rasco took office in January. The other deputy was fired. Rasco said such behavior will not be tolerated.

"I don't drink.  I don't put up with drinking and driving," he said. "If they're going to drink and drive - and get caught - they wouldn't have a job."

Rasco said the victim is still recovering at The MED. She has undergone two operations on her leg so far, and might have to have one more.

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