|Patrick W. Nobles|
|Born||September 1, 1984|
|Parents||William Nobles III|
Patrick Webb Nobles (b. 1984) is a Pensacola man who was responsible for an August 20, 2003 crash that killed his passenger, Todd Currie. Nobles, 18 at the time, was driving under the influence of alcohol when his Mercedes flipped and hit an electric pole in the East Hill neighborhood. Nobles, who was wearing a seat belt, suffered lacerations and contusions, but Currie, who was not wearing a seatbelt, was thrown from the vehicle and died when he hit his head on a concrete pole.
At the request of Currie's family, Nobles was not sentenced to prison. Instead, he was ordered to serve two years of house arrest and an additional 13 years of probation, the terms of which included a complete ban on the consumption of alcohol or illegal drugs. His driver's license was also permanently revoked.
Nobles completed the two years of house arrest successfully. He attended the [University of West Florida] and worked as a Certified Personal Trainer in a local gym. However, in the early morning hours of February 10, 2007, Nobles received an unexpected visit from his probation officer, Onoymi Williams. Williams reported that she saw several occupants in the apartment and beer cans and an empty vodka bottle through the window. Williams also reported that Nobles, who had bloodshot eyes and smelled of alcohol, confessed to drinking at a party the previous evening. After meeting with another probation official, Frank Keels, Nobles was told he would not be violated and that he could get help if he signed an admission that he had been drinking. Nobles did sign the admission, but never took a Breathalyzer test.
Nobles later denied that he had been drinking, and claimed that he had been tricked into signing a confession. He accused Williams, who is black, of racist motivations. "She was very clear that my daddy's money wasn't going to save me. … She was very clear that she would be happy to put a rich white boy in jail."
On August 2, 2007, Nobles was found guilty of violating the terms of his probation. His ex-girlfriend Savannah Poinor, with whom he attended the February 9 party, testified for the prosecution, producing photographs of Nobles in a liquor store and playing the drinking game Beer Pong. Poiner said this was implied by a picture of Nobles holding a SOLO cup. Defense attorney Jerry Allred called the photographs circumstantial, but Nobles admitted that even his association with underage drinkers constituted a violation of his probation.
On August 31, he was sentenced to ten years in state prison. Prosecutor Tim Register said Nobles was given "a second chance that the victim, Todd Currie, never got," but that Nobles "drank it away." When the verdict was announced Onoymi Williams high-fived her co-worker.
Patrick is a member of the prominent Nobles family. He is the son of William Nobles III and the nephew of Pensacola City Council member Jack Nobles and 1st Circuit Court Judge Linda Nobles. Because of the latter relationship, Judge William Wright of the 14th Circuit Court in Marianna was assigned to Nobles's case to avoid a possible conflict of interest. Judge Wright was clearly not happy to have to drive from Mariana to Pensacola to hear the case.
Patrick served the first couple of years at Graceville Correctional Facility, where he voluntarily enrolled in a substance abuse program and subsequently became a teaching assistant in that course in order to help other inmates. He also worked as a law clerk in the law library. Due to good behavior Patrick, was transferred to Wakulla Correctional Institution, a “character and faith-based institution”.
At Wakulla CI, Patrick was transferred to the Work Camp where he was asked to help institute the REEFS (Realizing Educational Emotional and Financial Smarts) Program. Designed and run by inmates, REEFS provides a holistic approach to re-entry at minimal cost to the state.
The program is composed of five courses: Credit and Debt Management, Time Management, Small Business Concepts, Personal Finance and Investing, and Life Mapping. The course names give an idea of just what the REEFS program is all about. Inmates looking to prepare themselves for re-entry can take whatever combination of courses best suits their needs.
Upon completion of the program, Nobles trained seven other inmate facilitators to help him and together they taught more that 1500 inmates in the first four years. Nobles also developed and taught an Investing course for those inmates who wanted to learn more. The classes are hugely successful and currently have several hundred inmates on the waiting lists.
Separately, Nobles, under the supervision of his classification officer, developed the PEER Program with a team that focuses training in the psychological and social areas, such as Parenting, Anger Management and Marriage.
During his time at both Graceville and Wakulla CI’s, Nobles worked very hard to complete his four-year degree using nothing but the textbooks, paper, pencils and the gracious cooperation of the professors at the University of West Florida who were Patrick’s teachers at the time of his sentencing. On May 5, 2012, Patrick Nobles received a Bachelor of Science degree in Hospitality, Recreation and Resort Management from the University of West Florida. He has also maintained his certification as a personal trainer.
In 2014, Nobles was transferred to the Reality House in Daytona Beach, FL, where he began intensive preparation for entry into the work release program and eventual re-entry into society.
- "Nobles guilty of probation violation." Pensacola News Journal, August 3, 2007.
- Mark O'Brien. "He had a second chance at freedom, but Nobles 'drank it away.'" Pensacola News Journal, September 2, 2007.