EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

November 23, 2013

Man arrested for DWI with alcohol interlock device


The Eagle-Tribune

---- — PELHAM — A Lowell man with two prior drunken driving convictions was arrested yesterday for drunken driving, despite the fact that his truck was equipped with an alcohol interlock device.

Police charged John T. LeVasseur, 46, with driving while intoxicated, driving while intoxicated per se, driving while intoxicated second offense, aggravated driving while intoxicated, conduct after an accident, possession of marijuana and transportation of marijuana.

Police pulled LeVasseur over yesterday afternoon after a woman reported that his white 2002 Mazda pickup truck struck a tree at the intersection of Hobbs and Simpson Mill roads. The witness followed LeVasseur, as he continued to drive his truck southbound on Route 38. She told police he drove all over the roadway.

Police caught up with LeVasseur at the intersection of Route 38 and Atwood Road. Police say LeVasseur was highly intoxicated and very unsteady on his feet. Officers found marijuana and multiple, empty, hard-alcohol bottles on the floor of the vehicle.

Police say LeVasseur failed field sobriety tests and was placed under arrest.

LeVasseur was previously convicted of driving under the influence in November 1984 in Lowell and in September 2009 in North Carolina. As a result of the recent conviction, LeVasseur was mandated to have an alcohol ignition interlocking device in his vehicle.

Police officers asked LeVasseur how he started his truck. According to police, he said that he blew into the device and it allowed him to start the vehicle.

According to Melanie’s Law, if you reside in Massachusetts and you want your license to be fully reinstated after multiple DWI convictions, you must install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle for two years.

The case remains under investigation regarding the operation of the alcohol ignition interlocking device and whether or not LeVasseur followed the guidelines correctly.

LeVasseur is currently being held on $1,000 bail. He is scheduled for arraignment in Salem, N.H., on Monday.