JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The driver of a gray sedan that was seen on video running several cars off the road and nearly hitting a wall Thursday on Interstate 295 was arrested and convicted of driving under the influence, records show.
Theresa Michelle Hice, 41, was arrested by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office shortly after the video was recorded by a concerned driver, according to an arrest report.
A JSO officer saw Hice driving a gray Honda Accord erratically on San Jose Boulevard just after 7 p.m. on Thursday, according to the report. Shortly after Hice drove up onto a sidewalk while attempting a u-turn near Claire Lane, she was pulled over by the officer who noted Hice had slurred speech and watery eyes, the report states.
When asked by the officer if she knew where she was, Hice said she thought she was on Southside Boulevard, according to the report. Hice first told the officer she had two bottles of Michelob Ultra at a restaurant on the Southside but later said she had five beers. Inside the car, the JSO officer found three opened small bottles of liquor, according to the report.
Hice was eventually arrested and accused of driving under the influence, careless driving, failing to drive in a single lane and possession of an open container.
Court records show Hice went to jail and was released Friday. She was found guilty of driving under the influence and a judge suspended her driver’s license for six months, placed her on 12 months of probation and ordered her to complete 50 hours of community service, records show.
Hice must also pay over $1,000 in fines, among other penalties.
“That makes me happy that they did catch her and hopefully, no one was injured. I hope going forward, she makes better choices," said Matt Robling who recorded the video.
News4Jax crime and safety expert Ken Jefferson said the video and the arrest that followed should serve as an example of what can happen when you drive impaired while putting others in harm’s way.
“This arrest is a prime example of a person feeling like they’re okay after having alcoholic beverages or ingesting some type of substance that could impair them as a driver. This should be a warning to all those individuals who would take a chance on drinking and driving,” Jefferson said.