Published: Wednesday, November 14, 2007
Blood-alcohol above 3x limit
A sobriety checkpoint was in operation, but on the
city's North Side.
YOUNGSTOWN The woman whose Cadillac ran into the rear end of an Austintown cruiser, severely injuring the police officer, was more than three times above the legal alcohol limit, the city prosecutor said.
Adrien N. Foutz, 22, of Iowa Avenue, Girard, was video-arraigned Tuesday in municipal court on a felony charge of aggravated vehicular assault. Judge Elizabeth A. Kobly set bond at $25,000 and a preliminary hearing for 10 a.m. Nov. 23.
The judge ordered that Foutz not drive. If Foutz drives, she will forfeit bond and remain in jail pending resolution of the charge against her.
City Prosecutor Jay Macejko said Foutz's blood-alcohol concentration, taken after the fiery crash on the Youngstown side of North Meridian Road at 1:06 a.m. Sunday, registered 0.279 on a portable Breathalyzer. The legal limit is 0.08.
Foutz also submitted to a blood test that was sent to a lab.
Macejko said misdemeanor charges of OVI, operating a vehicle impaired, and failure to maintain assured clear distance were dismissed Tuesday against Foutz as a legal tactic because the charges are part of the aggravated vehicular assault charge.
Bret Hartup, assistant city prosecutor, had asked that Foutz's bond be set at $50,000, believing her to be a menace to society and noting the blood-alcohol concentration. Hartup also pointed out that Austintown Patrolman Ross J. Linert suffered third-degree burns over 40 percent of his body.
Boardman attorney J. Gerald Ingram, who was retained to represent Foutz, told Judge Kobly that his client has no prior record, has lived in the same place for 13 years with her mother, has no passport, and is not a flight risk or danger to the community.
Linert, 48, remains in critical condition at the Akron Children's Hospital burn unit. The Ohio State Highway Patrol is investigating the crash.
Austintown Police Chief Bob Gavalier, who has visited Linert in Akron every day since the accident, said Tuesday night the outlook for him is good, but recovery will be a long process.
Gavalier announced a trust fund will be set up today wed at Home Savings and Loan for the Linert family. Anyone wishing to donate can do so at any bank branch.
Investigators believe Foutz was speeding when her car hit the Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptor driven by Linert, a 12-year veteran.
Macejko said after court Tuesday that he's pleased Foutz is prohibited from driving as a condition of bond. The prosecutor said Liner is expected to remain in an induced coma for five to seven days.
If convicted of aggravated vehicular assault, Foutz would face one to five years in prison, Macejko said. He said her record consists of only minor traffic violations.
At the time of the crash, a sobriety checkpoint was in operation but on Wick Avenue on the North Side. The checkpoint started at 11 a.m. Saturday and ended at 3 a.m. Sunday.
Girard Mayor James Melfi said he has known Foutz since she was a young child. Foutz played softball with and graduated from high school with the mayor's youngest daughter.
"Growing up, she was a very nice girl and always a respectful kid," he said. "She is not a bad kid at all."
Melfi said he also remembers coaching Foutz in softball when she was a younger girl and said she was a "very athletic" person.