Vanderbilt assistant football coach Vavae Tata has been charged with DUI and leaving the scene of an accident with property damage, according to Metro police reports. A Davidson County affidavit states that Tata was arrested Sunday in Nashville and blew a .18 percent on a breathalyzer test, more than twice legal blood-alcohol limit of .08 percent in Tennessee. Tata was announced as the Commodores’ defensive line coach on Jan. 24 as part of head coach Derek Mason’s new staff. A native of Hawaii, Tata previously was a defensive line assistant at Stanford where he worked alongside Mason from 2012-13. According to the report, Tata, 37, struck two parked vehicles on West End Avenue and fled the scene on foot in an attempt to avoid police. He was located several blocks away and admitted to operating the crashed vehicle. He smelled of alcohol, was unsteady on his feet and had bloodshot and watery eyes. Tata admitted to consuming a couple of beers at a downtown bar and, during a field sobriety test, had a hard time keeping his balance. “The one leg stand had to be stopped because the suspect could not keep his balance and the risk of him falling over and injuring himself was high,” the report stated. A second affidavit noted that Tata fled the scene in an attempt to return to the Holiday Inn on West End, where he and other assistant coaches have been staying since they were hired. Tata’s court appearance is scheduled for March 5.
Vanderbilt assistant football coach Vavae Tata charged with DUI
Tennessean | Feb 18