POLICE BEAT

Drunk driver hits telephone pole shortly after dropping off friend, police say

Posted Sept. 29, 2012, at 12:09 p.m.

HERMON, Maine — An intoxicated local man who dropped off a friend early Friday sped off and struck a telephone pole just down the street, said Deputy Steve Saucier of the Penobscot County Sheriff’s Office.

Matthew Watson, 28, was driving a 2008 Pontiac Grand Am when police say he hit the pole on Vafiades Avenue just after 1 a.m. Friday. The car was totalled, Saucier said.

“There was damage to the pole and some wires came down,” the deputy said. “He got out and contacted a family member and they ended up calling us.”

Watson, who has one previous drunk driving conviction, was arrested and charged with operating under the influence and was taken to Penobscot County Jail in Bangor.

Speed and Watson’s level of intoxication are factors in the crash, Saucier said, adding that the prior conviction “aggravates the penalties, if convicted.” (Nok-Noi Ricker, BDN)

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