Saline police awaiting charges for driver under 'super drunk' law
Saline Police expect charges under the state’s “super drunk” law for a 51-year-old woman whose blood-alcohol level registered at more than double the legal limit at the time of her arrest.
The driver was first spotted by an off-duty firefighter who saw her black Toyota RAV4 swerving on East Michigan Avenue around 10:30 p.m. July 5, police records show.
The firefighter called police dispatch and an officer located the vehicle near the intersection of North Ann Arbor Street and Brecon Drive. Her vehicle was observed crossing over the fog line several times and as the officer passed, she started to tailgate him from behind. Her vehicle then struck a curb near the Saline CVS Pharmacy.
The woman’s first breath test registered a blood-alcohol level of .217, records show. Michigan law defines standard drunken driving as a level of more than 0.08.
The woman was taken into custody overnight and later released pending charges from the Washtenaw County Prosecutors office. She has not yet been arraigned.
Detective Don Lupi said police are seeking charges under the super drunk law, which presents stiffer penalties for drivers with a blood alcohol level of more than 0.17. If convicted under the law, driving is forbidden for 45 days. After that point, first-time super-drunk offenders must buy an ignition interlock, which tests a driver’s breath before a vehicle starts. Possible jail time for the offense is double that for standard drunken driving.
Lupi said Saline Police have arrested about 10 people who were later charged under the "super drunk" law since it was first instituted in October 2010.