La PORTE – La Porte County Sheriff’s deputies responded to two incidents of allegedly intoxicated drivers caught sleeping behind the wheel in the wee hours of Sunday and Monday mornings.
James Patrick May, 24, of Michigan City, was picked up shortly before 1 a.m. Sunday near the intersection of CR-525W and U.S. 35.
Deputy J. Phillips wrote in his report that May agreed to undergo three field sobriety tests, but stopped after failing the horizontal gaze nystagmus test and losing his balance during the nine-step walk and turn test due to his high level of intoxication.
A portable breath test reading at the scene showed a 0.291 percent blood alcohol content; and a blood test taken later at La Porte Hospital showed 0.355 grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood, the report said.
Officers determined the plate number on May’s red Ford F-150 pickup was the same one that had been called in earlier that night by a citizen reporting a suspected drunken driver, the report said.
The truck was impounded, and May was transported to the La Porte County Jail after the hospital provided medical clearance.
His charges include operating while intoxicated with an alcohol content equivalent of 0.15 percent or higher, a Class A misdemeanor; and OWI as a first offense with no endangerment, a Class C misdemeanor.
About 24 hours after May’s arrest, sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to a domestic dispute near Ind. 2 and CR-250S.
There, a man who was walking along the road told them his girlfriend had kicked him out of her car, and that he was concerned because she had been drinking, according to Deputy A. Wells.
At about 12:30 a.m. Monday, officers located the woman asleep in the driver’s seat of her black Ford Focus outside Casey’s General Store in Westville, with an open bottle of liquor in the driver’s door, according to the report.
Jessica Autumn Gensel, 24, of Michigan City, subsequently failed three field sobriety tests and provided a breath sample of 0.214 percent, the report says. A blood sample taken at La Porte Hospital shortly thereafter showed a reading of 0.213 grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood.
Gensel received medical clearance to be transported to jail, where she was booked on charges of operating while intoxicated with an ACE higher than 0.15 percent, a class A misdemeanor; and operating while intoxicated with an ACE higher than 0.08 percent, a class C misdemeanor, according to the report.
As of late Wednesday afternoon, Gensel remained incarcerated on a bond of $405, according to the sheriff's department. Her next court appearance is scheduled for Oct. 8 in Superior Court 3.
May was released on a $900 bond and his next court appearance is scheduled for Oct. 21 in Superior Court 4, according to court records.
— From staff reports