DAYTONA BEACH, FL – A wrong-way driver who crashed into an oncoming vehicle and narrowly missed several others early Sunday on International Speedway Boulevard near Daytona Beach was arrested and charged with his second recent DUI.
Nathan Zacharias, 27, of Deltona, was driving eastbound in the westbound lanes of traffic around 12:30 a.m., causing other drivers to swerve to avoid a head-on collision with his pickup.
Zacharias clipped the driver’s side mirror of one vehicle that swerved out of his way. Another vehicle was not able to avoid a collision, and two of the four people in it were transported to the hospital for treatment of injuries. Their vehicle sustained heavy damage and was inoperable.
While conducting the crash investigation, it was evident that Zacharias was impaired, but not injured. His fine motor skills were diminished, his speech was slurred, his eyes were glassy and bloodshot, he was unsteady on his feet and he smelled heavily of an alcoholic beverage. Several open and unopened beer cans were on the floor of his vehicle.
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The deputy noted Zacharias’ driver’s license was restricted to business purposes only due to a prior DUI in August 2021. Asked how the crash occurred, Zacharias said he was on his way home to Deltona (although he was driving east toward Daytona Beach) when a deer caused him to swerve into the other vehicle.
While being transported in the deputy’s patrol vehicle, Zacharias became verbally abusive and made use of racial slurs several times. He further stated that the deputy should die, and that he should be hanged.
Zacharias was charged with three counts of DUI with damage to persons or property, failure to obey driver’s license restrictions, refusal to submit to DUI testing, and making a threat against a law enforcement officer. He was still in the Volusia County Branch Jail with a total bond of $9,000 at the time of this writing.