HOUSTON (KTRK/CNN) - Two Houston police officers spent Christmas Eve in the hospital after their cruiser flipped multiple times before erupting in flames, following what investigators say was a nearly head-on collision with an alleged drunken driver.
The families of Officers Alonzo Reid and John Daily are asking for prayers for their full recoveries. Both men suffered burns. Reid was up and talking at the hospital in the day following the crash, but John Daily remains sedated with 50 percent of his body burned.
"Do not drink and drive,” said Reid’s mother, Lisa Malone. "You have caused serious pain to families, and I just thank the Lord that my son is still alive"
John Daily’s father, Owen Daily, echoed Malone’s words in reference to his own son.
"It's just a miracle. You see the pictures of that police officer's car, you know… We’re thankful that he’s still alive,” he said.
Police arrested 23-year-old Cesar Collazo for allegedly causing the crash. He faces charges of intoxication assault and failing to stop and render aid.
Officers say Reid and John Daily were responding to another officer’s call for assistance just after midnight on Christmas Eve when a vehicle, allegedly driven by Collazo, overturned in front of the cruiser, nearly causing a head-on collision.
The cruiser flipped several times and caught fire. Reid managed to get out of the burning vehicle then, along with some good Samaritans, pulled his partner from the flames.
"He wanted me to ask y'all to thank the civilians that helped him pull his partner out the vehicle,” Malone said.
Collazo did not sustain any injuries. He allegedly told police he was drunk and buying beer on Sunday night before the accident.
Prosecutors say anyone who served Collazo while he was visibly intoxicated may face criminal charges.
"If someone is visibly intoxicated, if someone's a minor, just don't sell to them," said Sean Teare, with the Harris County District Attorney's vehicular crimes division. "That's it, and you can save a life of someone in your own community if you do that."
If convicted, Collazo faces 60 years behind bars.