Following a Fourth of July week that saw 29 motorists arrested for drunken driving, heavy rain fell last weekend, keeping many cars off flooded roads. East Hampton Town police reported only three people arrested on charges of driving while intoxicated, two of them following accidents. The third resulted in felony charges.
An officer was headed to Montauk at 6 a.m. on Saturday morning at the wheel of the town police force’s “highway car,” the only one in the fleet that does not have lights on its roof or police markings on its rear. As he passed Cyril’s, he reported, a 1993 Toyota began tailgating him. This went on for about a mile, until the Toyota swerved across the double yellow lines and back onto the eastbound shoulder. The officer pulled onto the shoulder and stopped, with the Toyota doing likewise right behind him.
When the officer walked up to question the driver, Shanika M. Dunmore, he saw that she was partly naked, having removed her pink slacks. Ms. Dunmore was unsure “where she was coming from or who she was with, and why her pants were not on,” he reported.
The 33-year-old woman, who lives in Bellport, failed two roadside sobriety tests. In addition to a misdemeanor charge of D.W.I., she faces a felony charge of aggravated driving without a license. Normally a misdemeanor, the charge was elevated to the felony level due to multiple suspensions of her driver’s license. Police, who judged Ms. Dunmore too intoxicated to be arraigned that morning, impounded the Toyota.
On Sunday morning, Ms. Dunmore’s mother sat in the courtroom while her daughter was being arraigned by East Hampton Town Justice Lisa Rana. Brian Doyle, an attorney who was in court that morning to represent another client, acted as Ms. Dunmore’s attorney for the arraignment. He asked Justice Rana to set bail at $500, saying that Ms. Dunmore’s mother had brought that much with her.
Ms. Dunmore told the court she lives with her mother, and works as a baby sitter.
“You have multiple, multiple suspensions on your license,” said Justice Rana. “There are four warrants for your arrest. You currently have one open misdemeanor, one probation revocation, one prior felony conviction, and four misdemeanor convictions.”
She stopped reading. “Ten thousand dollars,” she said.
Ms. Dunmore’s mother gasped. Her daughter was led away and taken later that morning to the county jail in Riverhead. She was due back in court yesterday.
A 2001 Mercedes-Benz ran a stop sign Sunday morning at South Edgemere Road and the Plaza in Montauk and kept going, smashing through a wooden fence and into some bushes by the gazebo in the center of the plaza before coming to a stop at the gazebo itself. The driver, Darren M. Graff of New York City, 39, told police he couldn’t stop because of the wet, slick road.
He did not perform to their satisfaction on a field sobriety test, however, and was taken back to headquarters on a charge of drunken driving. At the stationhouse, he refused to take the breath test, resulting in the automatic suspension of his right to drive in New York State.
In court later that morning Mr. Graff appeared tired, yawning several times as he was arraigned. He told Justice Rana he was a financial adviser.
“I own a house in Southampton,” he said, but it was rented for the season and he had spent the weekend at a Montauk motel. She released him without bail, with a July 14 return date in court.
Another car accident, this one late Saturday night in Springs, resulted in the week’s third D.W.I. arrest by town police. Lila E. Geyer, two days past her 32nd birthday, was driving a 2005 Jeep Cherokee south on Springs-Fireplace Road near Gardiner Avenue when she veered across the yellow lines and sideswiped an oncoming Dodge, according to the police report.
Back at the stationhouse her blood-alcohol level was recorded at .23, almost three times the legal limit and well above the level that triggers an aggravated D.W.I. charge. That charge, if it is the driver’s first such offense, is still a misdemeanor, but Suffolk County assistant district attorneys prosecute it much more aggressively.
In court the next morning, Ms. Geyer told Justice Rana she’d just moved to East Hampton from San Francisco. In addition to drunken driving, she was accused of driving without a license and driving an uninsured vehicle.
She was released without bail, but with a future date in court.
On Main Street in Sag Harbor, just after midnight on Saturday, police stopped a 2008 Toyota with Miami plates, saying it had been speeding. The driver, Juan E. Romero, 28, reportedly failed the station-house breath test and now has a future date in court.