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Woman Charged With DUI After Driving Wrong Way on Highway 176

Daniel Prince

Woman stopped and arrested without incident

Last Wednesday at 10 p.m., deputies with the Union County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched to a report of a reckless driver. While responding, they were advised the vehicle was traveling south in the northbound lanes of Highway 176. Sgt. Spencer advised Cpl. Israel that the vehicle was passing Oak Grove Road in the northbound lanes while heading south toward the city of Union. Spencer got behind the vehicle and activated her blue lights. The car continued on.

Cpl. Israel then took over as primary vehicle and activated his blue lights and siren, changing siren tones several times to try and get the vehicle to stop. While pursuing the vehicle, Israel saw the vehicle travel from one side of the road to the other several times and run off into the grass median several times. The vehicle finally stopped on Hwy. 176 just before the intersection on Pine Knoll Road.

The driver was a female, identified as Keia Austin. Israel noted the driver had a strong odor of alcohol coming from her. She was unsteady on her feet and had to be assisted to a patrol vehicle. Upon searching her vehicle, Israel saw several mini bottles laying in the front passenger seat. He saw one of the mini bottles was open and completely empty.

34-year-old Keia Austin was arrested and charged with open container violation, driving under the influence, failure to stop for a blue light, and driving the wrong way on a divided highway.

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