A 54-year-old Florida woman faces multiple charges after congressmen said she influenced and misguided driving on Airport-Pulling Road, crashed into a car and then led the delegates in the chase early this morning.
Delegates said Melissa A. Jeffries drove a white Toyota Camry southbound in the northbound lane of Airport-Pulling Road near the intersection with Vanderbilt Beach Road shortly after midnight.
A CCSO deputy was in his marked patrol car on Vanderbilt just west of the Airport when he heard a loud crash to the east, saw a cloud of dust, and then a white Camry. , with Jeffries behind the wheel, headed south of the Airport away from the accident.
The Camry had front-end damage including a flat tire and a loss of headlights on the driver’s side.
The co-pilot attempted to initiate a traffic stop on the Camry, but Jeffries ignored the emergency lights and horns and kept going, swerving, turning her tires and swerving to the curb in the process.
The delegates deployed stop sticks in pursuit and Jeffries drove past them.
The chase ended after representatives forced the Camry to a safe stop on Collier Avenue near the intersection with Pine Ridge Road.
According to the arrest report, Jeffries had a strong odor of alcohol on his breath, was unsteady, and swaying.
She told the medical staff that she had attended a Christmas party. At one point she almost fell, needing first responders to help her to avoid falling.
She refused the co-pilot’s request to take a breath sample to determine the concentration of alcohol in the breath.
Jeffries was arrested and charged with DUI with injury/property damage and fleeing and evading.
She was also charged with hitting and fleeing with injuries after deputies learned that the driver of the van had a leg injury. The injuries were not serious and the driver refused medical treatment.
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https://www.tampafp.com/unsteady-and-swaying-florida-woman-arrested-post-christmas-party-driving-wrong-way-hit-and-run/ “Unstable and swaying” Florida woman arrested after Christmas party Driving the wrong way, Hit and Run