A woman was arrested following a car crash near Packwood on Sept. 5, according to local authorities. Washington police arrested the 39-year old driver, who now faces DUI charges in addition to allegations of methamphetamine possession. As of this report, the woman was due back in court on Sept. 17.
According to police, the woman was driving westbound on U.S. Highway 12 shortly before 9:30 a.m. when the accident took place. Apparently she made a left-hand turn and was abruptly struck by a truck driven by a 56-year-old man. Washington State Patrol says the woman caused the accident by failing to yield.
The woman’s vehicle was totaled, and she was taken to a local hospital with undetermined injuries. The truck driver was not injured, but his 19-year-old passenger was hurt. His vehicle sustained heavy damage. It is unclear what caused police to believe the woman was drunk at the time of this accident, and the report did not make it clear how or when they came to the conclusion that she was in possession of illegal narcotics. If a search was made of her vehicle, it was not mentioned in this report.
Of course, it seems likely that Washington police would have searched the woman or the vehicle before charging her with possession, and it may be that a blood test was taken at the hospital when she arrived for treatment, possibly leading to the DUI charges. In any event, law enforcement procedures regarding their investigation and arrest of the woman will be closely scrutinized in criminal court. If the officers responsible for the alleged crime scene did not adhere to appropriate procedures and respect the rights of the woman in question, whatever evidence they might wish to present may not make it in front of a jury.
Source: chronline.com, “Driver Charged With DUI, Meth Possession After Saturday Crash Near Packwood“, Sept. 9, 2015