An alleged “dine and dash” at a Southern Minnesota restaurant reportedly has led to a string of charges against a 29-year-old woman, according to Fox 47 News. A woman is facing a gross misdemeanor charge for allegedly driving while impaired, along with other allegations.
Police claim that staff at an Applebee’s restaurant called police to report that two women fled the establishment without paying for dinner. The staff noted a license plate number on a Chrysler seen driving from the restaurant, which police tracked to the apartment complex of the registered owner.
Law enforcement says that they found the Chrysler outside the home of the owner. A woman reportedly was behind the wheel, but authorities claim that the woman refused to cooperate as officers approached the car. An officer claims the woman tried to drive away when he contacted the driver. Officials say that the cop reached through the window, grabbed the keys and shut off the ignition to prevent the woman from driving away.
Eventually, the woman was taken in for processing and charged with second-degree DWI, reckless driving and child endangerment. Authorities say that the woman was behind the wheel with her 8-year-old daughter in the car. The woman arranged to have someone care for her daughter as she was taken down to the police station.
Authorities say that the woman denied having been at the restaurant that night. Police claim that to-go containers from the establishment were located in the car.
Followers of this blog may recognize that having a child in the car is an aggravating factor under Minnesota’s DWI laws. The woman is accused of second-degree DWI, which is a gross misdemeanor charge (involving two aggravating factors). Second-degree DWI charges not only increase the potential criminal penalties, but also have more cumbersome license revocation periods and may involve a vehicle forfeiture issue. The timeline to bring a challenge to the revocation and vehicle forfeiture is short. It is important for a person accused of a DWI charge to consider seeking the assistance of legal counsel as soon as possible, as some of a person’s rights may evaporate as times passes.
Source: My Fox 47, “Woman resists police officer,” March 11, 2013