Teacher arrested for showing up drunk to the first day of school, police release bodycam footage

A third-grade teacher in Oklahoma was arrested for public intoxication on the first day of school. Kimberly Coates, 53, allegedly showed signs of impairment and admitted to consuming alcohol before arriving at Perkins-Tryon Intermediate School. Police captured the incident through bodycams and recently released the footage.

Kimberly Coates, a third-grade teacher, is facing one count of public intoxication following an incident on Thursday, Aug. 17. The Perkins Police Department responded to reports of an allegedly intoxicated teacher, who was described as “off” and “acting weird” by the school administration. Law enforcement quickly arrived at the scene to address the situation.

The school resource officer was the first to take notice that Coates had red, watery eyes and slurred speech. She struggled to complete sentences, prompting the officer to suspect impairment. In police’s body-worn camera footage, Coates mentioned taking medication for anxiety and agreed to undergo a sobriety test. The results of the preliminary breath test indicated a blood alcohol content of 0.24, three times the legal limit for driving.

Coates was arrested and booked into the Payne County Jail on a charge of public intoxication. The City of Perkins issued a press release stating that Coates was arrested “on the anticipated District Court charge of Public Intoxication.” Sergeant Spencer Gedon of the Perkins Police Department emphasized that Coates had consumed several drinks, indicating a significant level of intoxication.

During the investigation, Superintendent Doug Ogle discovered a cup that emitted a strong odor of alcohol. Ogle questioned Coates about its contents, to which she initially claimed it was her juice. However, the school resource officer smelled the cup and identified it as wine. Coates later stated that she had used the cup the previous day, but the officer observed red liquid still present in it.

The school district responded swiftly to the incident, taking immediate action to ensure the safety of students. They released a statement referring to the incident as a “personnel issue” and reassured parents of their children’s well-being. Coates, who is no longer incarcerated, awaits formal charges.