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Sunday, May 15, 2022

Woman urinates in her clothes during DUI arrest

Heather Lee Doherty
Heather Lee Doherty

An Umatilla woman reportedly squatted and urinated in her clothes after failing a series of field sobriety exercises during her drunk-driving arrest early Thursday.

Heather Lee Doherty, 45, of 41922 Thomas Boat Landing Road, was charged with DUI after being pulled over around 2:15 a.m. in an active construction zone on State Road 19 at McKinley Drive. The inside lane of the roadway was coned off for about 2 miles and a Florida Highway Patrol trooper was assisting with traffic control with his vehicle lights active. The trooper was standing alongside two flaggers who were assigned the duty to stop traffic because construction workers and equipment were in the roadway further north, according to the FHP report.

The trooper observed a vehicle approaching from the south and saw it swerve toward the cones two separate times. The trooper warned the flaggers to pay attention to oncoming traffic because the swerves weren’t normal. The vehicle failed to slow down as it approached. The two flaggers had bright orange flashlights and reflective traffic vests. They were signaling for the vehicle to stop, but it didn’t even slow down, the report said.

The trooper yelled for the flaggers to move and the vehicle came to a sudden stop moments before colliding with one of the flaggers and a construction worker. The trooper approached the vehicle and spoke with the driver, later identified as Doherty by both a Florida and Georgia driver’s license. The trooper had to ask Doherty multiple times to pull the car to the shoulder because she kept saying she was sorry and didn’t appear to be listening, according to the report.

Once the vehicle was safely on the shoulder, the trooper tried to interview Doherty and observed she couldn’t understand questions unless they were asked multiple times. When asked for her driver’s license, insurance and registration, she handed the trooper a license from Georgia and then started moving papers around in her glove box but forgot what she was looking for. Asked again for her registration and insurance, Doherty handed over a Florida driver’s license, the report said.

Due to Doherty’s driving pattern, inability to understand instructions or questions and glassy eyes, the trooper asked her to get out of the vehicle. The trooper then noticed the smell of alcohol on her breath. Doherty agreed to attempt the field sobriety exercises and was unable to maintain her balance in all three, according to the report.

After being placed under arrest, Doherty said she had to “pee.” The trooper tried to finish the on-scene work as quickly as possible, but Doherty squatted next to the patrol car and urinated in her clothes. She was taken to the Lake County Jail, where she provided breath samples that resulted in BAC readings of .135 and .140, the report said.

Doherty was released the next day on $1,000 bond and is scheduled to appear in Lake County Court on June 1.

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