On August 17, 2023, Oklahoma third grade teacher Kimberly Coates has been arrested for public intoxication. The incident came to light after school officials became concerned about her behavior at school, suspecting that she was under the influence. A subsequent investigation led to her arrest after it was confirmed that she had arrived at the school in an inebriated state.
A body cam video, which documented the interaction between Coates, her employers, and law enforcement, initially showed the teacher denying she was drunk on the job.
In the video, Coates’ employer voiced his concerns, stating that she appeared to be under the influence of medication. Coates excused her behavior and told law enforcement that she takes medication for anxiety, alluding that it might be the reason behind the odd demeanor.
Coates’ employer then confronted the teacher and asked if she’d had anything to drink while she was at school. Coates denied drinking on the premises and alleged she consumed alcohol until 3 am the previous night.
Initially captured on a body camera video, the interaction involving Coates, her employers, and law enforcement revealed her denying being intoxicated while on duty.
The video depicted Coates’ employer expressing apprehensions, noting her apparent influence of medication. Coates defended herself, explaining to law enforcement that she was taking medication for anxiety, hinting that it might be contributing to her unusual behavior.
Subsequently, she consented to undergo a breathalyzer test, which recorded a reading of .24 – a staggering three times the legal limit for driving. The administering officer confronted Coates with the test results, and she admitted to having consumed a drink on her way to work:
“Unless you drank a s*** at like 8 this morning, I don’t see how you could still be that high,” the police officer told her.
Despite Kimberly Coates’ persistent denial of consuming alcohol while on duty, her employer produced a blue cup recovered from her classroom and positioned it on the table. Reportedly emanating a strong alcohol odor, this cup became a focal point of contention. Shortly thereafter, a visibly agitated Coates was taken into custody.