Man gets life in prison for 10th DWI offense

- A Weatherford man was sentenced to life in prison Wednesday after being convicted of driving while intoxicated for the 10th time.

According to the Parker County District Attorney’s Office, 62-year-old Ivy Ray Eberhardt was caught driving recklessly and aggressively in Fort Worth in 2014.

The officer who pulled him over noted he smelled like alcohol and urine and failed field sobriety tests. Eberhardt also told the officer he had consumed about a half a pint of whiskey before getting behind the wheel.

"The case took a long time to reach a conclusion because, while we were waiting for it to go to trial, Mr. Eberhardt cut off his electronic monitor, skipped bond, and fled to Colorado where he was arrested for yet another DWI offense," said Assistant District Attorney Jeff Swain.  "We had to wait until he was done with his sentence up there before we could bring him down here to conclude our case."

Eberhardt’s criminal record includes four misdemeanor DWI convictions in Travis and Tarrant counties in the 80s and 90s. He served time in prison for felony DWI offenses in Parker County in 1998, Tarrant County in 2001 and Runnels County in 2004. He also has convictions from 2010 and 2015 in Colorado.

“Part of my job is to protect the citizens of Parker County and the only way that I can think of to do that from somebody that has 12 DWI arrests and 10 DWI convictions is to put you in a place that you can't drive for as long as I possibly can,” Judge Craig Towson told him.

Despite the life sentence, Eberhardt will be eligible for parole in 15 years. He could also get out sooner with good behavior.

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