Franklin mom faces DUI after wrecks with kid in car - WKRN News 2

Franklin mom faces DUI after wrecks with kid in car

Posted: Updated: June 26, 2012 10:16 PM
Mary Alice Neal, 35, is charged with DUI, failure to report a crash and leaving the scene of a crash. Mary Alice Neal, 35, is charged with DUI, failure to report a crash and leaving the scene of a crash.
FRANKLIN, Tenn. -

A Franklin mother faces a DUI charge, among others after police said she was involved in two crashes Monday afternoon with her five-year-old daughter in the car.

The first crash occurred around 12:30 p.m. on Mallory Lane at South Springs Drive.

Police said 35-year-old Mary Alice Neal fled the scene after striking another vehicle with her Chevrolet Tahoe.

As she fled, Neal rear-ended a semi-truck stopped on Perimeter Drive near Galleria Boulevard.
 
Neal was still behind the wheel of the SUV when officers arrived, according to a news release from Franklin police.  Her five-year-old child was restrained in the back seat.

Neal was transported to Williamson Medical Center where was released late Tuesday afternoon.

The child was not injured.

Upon her release, police said Neal was transported to the Williamson County jail and charged with DUI, failure to report a crash and leaving the scene of a crash.

"The fact that this suspect had two crashes back to back in a short period of time while she was impaired is disturbing," Franklin Police Spokesman Sergeant Charles Warner said. "What is more disturbing is her five-year-old child was in the back seat of her car with her in those crashes."

Eye witnesses said Neal was driving dangerously as she fled the scene of the wreck on Mallory Lane and South Springs Drive.

A man, who would only give his first name Robert, followed Neal as he talked to police dispatchers and gave her location.

"She pulled into the [Cool Springs Galleria] parking lot and did a full lap around the perimeter of the mall," he said. "She jumped up on the curb a couple of times and ran over the stop sign."

Eventually Neal rear ended a semi-truck that was pulling out of the Shoe Carnival parking lot near the mall.
 
"I didn't realize what was going on, whether she was just panicked from the wreck or what her state of mind was," he said.

According to police, officers found two empty vodka bottles in Neal's car and a vodka bottle that was more than half empty.

"It definitely makes you wonder about people drinking and driving in mid-afternoon. It is crazy," Robert said. "It's a miracle no one else got hurt."

Franklin police said this arrest should be a reminder for people to make wise decisions about drinking and whether or not to drive.

"We don't condemn drinking," Sgt. Warner said. "What we do condemn is what is illegal and that's getting behind the wheel of a vehicle after you are impaired."

He continued, "Doing that is bad enough. Doing that and creating crashes is terrible. Doing that and creating crashes with your children in the car is unacceptable."

Having a child in the vehicle at the time of a DUI arrest enhances sentencing to include a minimum of 30 days in jail and a $1,000 fine if convicted, police said.

Neal was booked into the Williamson County jail and bond was set at $4,500.

Neal's family did not want to comment when contacted by Nashville's News 2.

A relative picked up Neal's daughter from the scene Monday afternoon.

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