standing Westerly police 2

WESTERLY — A Wakefield resident is facing charges after the police said she admitted to having "too much to drink" after crashing into a guardrail on Post Road Friday, then became combative with first responders after learning she would be arrested.

Westerly police charged 41-year-old Teresa Gagne with driving under the influence with an unknown blood alcohol content, refusal to submit to a chemical test and disorderly conduct. She was later released on bond pending an upcoming arraignment hearing in Fourth Division District Court.

Police Chief Shawn Lacey said the charges stem from a crash that occurred around 10:30 p.m. on Friday along Route 1 near the intersection with Shore Road near the Haversham. The police said an investigation determined that Gagne, who driving a 2009 Chevy Aveo, was traveling north along the roadway when she crashed into a recently installed guardrail at the intersection. The collision caused her to carom off the wall and spin before stopping in the center of the roadway, blocking both northbound travel lanes.

The crash caused heavy damage to the Aveo, which was later towed from the scene, as well as damaging the guardrail.

Gagne was found on the driver's side floor of the car when officers arrived, Lacey said, but indicated she was OK. She suffered a noticeable cut to her arm and other minor injuries but refused medical attention.

According to police, officers attempted to assist Gagne out of the car and detected several signs of intoxication, including being unable to stand on her own and struggling to keep balance. When questioned, the police said she told officers that she "screwed up and had too much to drink."

When officers attempted to give her a field sobriety test, however, she refused and tried to tell the officer that "she was taking her purse and leaving," grabbing the bag away from where officers had put it and trying to walk away..

Due to concerns over her behavior, Lacey said medics with Westerly Ambulance took her to Westerly Hospital for evaluation. At the hospital, she refused chemical tests and continued to berate hospital staff and an officer assigned to go with her, which led to the disorderly conduct charge.

Gagne was later released on bond and is scheduled to appear for arraignment in Fourth Division District Court on May 17.

jvallee@thewesterlysun.com

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