Suspect in deadly Cleburne hit-&-run has long criminal history

The driver arrested for a deadly hit-and-run accident Wednesday night has been in and out of jail and prison for decades.

Investigators say 58-year-old Joseph Michael Haley crashed head on into 26-year-old Danny Clements vehicle, killing him.

Haley ran off, but was caught a few hours later. Police say they also found alcohol containers in his truck.

Danny’s brother Jarred Clements says he still can’t believe his brother is gone.

"He loved his family and we all miss him very much," he said 

Clements was an avid Hunter and family man. He called his mom to say he was leaving work Wednesday evening, but never made it home.

"He wasn't married, he wasn't a father but I thought one day he'd make the best dad because he's always been good with kids," said Jarred.

DPS investigators say Haley swerved his pickup into the wrong lane on FM 1434 in Cleburne and crashed his truck into Clements’ car.

Detectives say Haley climbed out of his smashed up vehicle moments after the crash and ran from the scene before first responders got there. Haley was spotted the next morning at daylight walking along the highway, visibly injured, not far from the crash scene.

A DPS spokesperson says investigators took him to the hospital and will charge him when he is released.

"I'd say you are a coward and that I hope you'll change your ways and hopefully it's a long time before ever get out of prison," said Jarred.

According to public records, Joseph Haley's a convicted sex offender. His criminal history includes indecency with a child, DUI, public intoxication, open container, multiple drug arrests, failing to register as a sex offender, and jumping bail.

His most recent charge prior to the hit-and-run accident was possession of marijuana last July. His bond was revoked on that charge last week.

Investigators say they found open alcohol containers in Haley's smashed truck, but can't prove he was under the influence because he was found 13 hours after the crash.

"The other guy obviously is not doing anything to make a positive impact in this world, so I hope he gets what he deserves," said Jarred.

Haley is charged with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, failure to stop and render aid and driving without a valid license.

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