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Star-Telegram.com

Fort Worth officer faces DWI charge after gun incident

Posted Monday, Dec. 26, 2011

By Yamil Berard

yberard@star-telegram.com

Editor's note: This story was originally published in December 2011.

FORT WORTH -- A police officer faces charges of driving while intoxicated and providing a firearm to a felon after his arrest early Monday, which came after a constable reported seeing the officer and a companion shoot a street lamp and a street sign, police reported.

Officer Daniel B. Gonzalez, who was off duty, was arrested about 4:30 a.m. at a restaurant in north Fort Worth. Gonzalez, 35, has been on the force since January 2002. He was put on restricted duty and his gun and badge were taken away, according to a news release from Maj. Paul Henderson, a police spokesman.

Also arrested was Bobby Joe Newton, 26. He faces a charge of possession of a firearm by a felon and discharging a firearm within city limits.

The incident started about 4 a.m., when the constable, who was off duty, said he saw Gonzalez shoot a handgun into the air, striking a street lamp. Newton then fired several shots from the same handgun, striking a street sign, the constable reported.

He followed the men to an IHOP restaurant at North Beach Street and Northeast Loop 820 and called 911.

Fort Worth officers found Gonzalez and Newton inside the restaurant. Both appeared intoxicated and were arrested, the news release stated.

Police Chief Jeff Halstead issued a statement that such behavior will not be tolerated.

"We have made great strides in addressing this national trend of alcohol use and abuse by law enforcement officers and have seen significant positive results in our own police department. Unfortunately, it only takes one negative incident to undermine our accomplishments and successes," he said.

Department officials continue to investigate the incident. Other charges related to the damaged property may be forthcoming.

The gun was not Gonzalez's police-issued weapon, the news release stated.

Newton's criminal record includes convictions for drug possession, burglary and theft, according to online records.

Yamil Berard, 817-390-7705