HAVERHILL — Police said a New Hampshire woman whose right to drive was suspended after two prior drunk driving convictions in her home state was driving drunk and barefoot on Friday evening in Haverhill.
Police said the woman first rear ended a vehicle in the Westgate Plaza area, where she stopped to ask the driver not to report the accident to police but the man refused. She then drove off and about a half hour later crashed more severely into a parked vehicle on Altamont Street, injuring herself and her sister’s pit bull. Police found the dog in the back seat bleeding from a serious head wound.
The woman told police the dog had struck her windshield on the passenger’s side, causing a hole in the windshield the size of a soccer ball, according to police.
After the woman was transported to Lawrence General Hospital for treatment, which she refused according to police, the woman would not allow staff members to collect a blood or urine sample and threatened to stab a nurse with a pen. She also threatened to stab the hospital’s security guards if she wasn’t released immediately.
Police charged Kerry Gilbert, 37, 3 Lancelot Court, 19, Salem, N.H., with operating under the influence of liquor, third offense, operating after revocation (subsequent offence) negligent operation of a motor vehicle and operating while suspended for OUI. She was also issued citations for leaving the scene of property damage and failure to yield or stop.
Gilbert was arraigned on the charges on Monday in Haverhill District Court, where Judge Patricia Dowling ordered her held without bail. Dowling scheduled a 58A dangerousness hearing for Friday.
According to police report on file in Haverhill District Court, police were notified at 8:59 p.m. on Friday of an accident on Lowell Avenue at River Street involving a green 2006 Chrysler 300, which was reported to have rear-ended a Mercedes-Benz after allegedly failing to use caution when merging.
The driver of the Mercedes told police that the driver then got out of her car and asked him not to report the accident to police as she didn’t have a license and that she wanted to resolve the situation without police involvement.
The man told police that the woman smelled of alcohol and that she appeared unsteady on her feet.
According to a police report, when the man attempted to call police on his cell phone, the woman got back into her car and drove off.
Police issued an alert to be on the lookout for a vehicle they had identified as belonging to Gilbert based on witness information.
At 9:24 p.m., Officer James Cotreau was dispatched to Altamont Street on a report of a vehicle hitting a parked vehicle. Cotreau found Gilbert in the driver’s seat of her Chrysler. According to Cotreau’s report, Gilbert told him that a truck that was coming in her direction had forced her to the side of the road.
She also told Cotreau that she’d consumed seven beers at her sister’s home on Hilldale Avenue prior to driving, according to the report.
“There was a pit bull with severe head injuries bleeding profusely in the rear seat,” Cotreau stated in his report.
Cotreau said Gilbert smelled of alcohol and that her speech was slurred, her eyes were watery and bloodshot. He added that Gilbert was not wearing any shoes and was barefoot. He said he did not conduct any field sobriety tests as addressing her injuries was a priority.
Gilbert was treated on the scene by Trinity Ambulance and was subsequently taken to Lawrence General Hospital for additional treatment of her injuries.
According to Cotreau’s report, Gilbert’s sister arrived on the scene and took custody of her injured dog. She told police she was going to bring her dog to the hospital immediately.
Cotreau wrote that after being taken to Lawrence General Hospital, Gilbert refused treatment, demanded to speak to her lawyer, refused requests for blood and urine samples and demanded to be released.
A nurse told police that after Gilbert demanded a pen, she grabbed one and threatened to use it to stab the nurse as well as the hospital’s security guards. The nurse described Gilbert’s demeanor as “out of control.”
Accoding to Cotreau’s report, Gilbert repeatedly refused to allow blood samples to be taken. She was subsequently taken into custody by Lawrence police for OUI and was handed over to Haverhill police. During the booking process at the Haverhill police station, Gilbert refused to undergo chemical testing. Cotreau indicated in his report that police notified the RMV of her refusal to submit to a breathalyzer test.
“Gilbert was advised her license could be suspended for at least a period of 180 days or up to life for such refusal,” Cotreau wrote in his report.
Cotreau said Gilbert responded by saying “Hmm up to life huh? No, I’m not taking the test.”
Gilbert subsequently complained of chest pain and was transported to Merrimack Valley Hospital in Haverhill where she was treated and released back into police custody.