A high school science teacher who was involved in a one-car accident on the night of Feb. 17 became physically and verbally combative when troopers asked her to submit to a breath test according to a report from the North Carolina Highway Patrol. Media accounts indicate that troopers called the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department to transport the woman to a detention facility because their vehicles are equipped with rear cages.

The woman’s problems began when she lost control of her vehicle on the ramp connecting Interstate 77 with Interstate 85. Reports indicate that her SUV left the roadway and struck a tree. Troopers arriving at the scene say that they became suspicious when they noticed the odor of alcohol and observed that the woman behind the wheel had bloodshot and watery eyes. Troopers say that the woman told them that she was a teacher but lied about where she teaches and gave them a false name.

According to troopers, the situation escalated when the woman was asked to submit to a breath test and was told that she was being taken into custody on suspicion of drunk driving. The woman’s allegedly extreme behavior prompted troopers to contact the principal of the high school where the woman teaches for guidance. After the woman refused to provide a breath sample, troopers obtained a search warrant for a blood draw.

Suspects who become belligerent and combative with law enforcement do themselves no favors, and this kind of behavior may also make securing a favorable plea agreement more difficult for their criminal defense attorneys. While it may be understandable to react to the prospect of serious criminal charges with anger and frustration, experienced attorneys may advise their clients to think beyond the moment and consider the long-term consequences of their actions.

Source: WSOC-TV, “Highway Patrol: CMS teacher combative with troopers, arrested on DWI charge after crash”, Staff report, Feb. 19, 2019