OLD TOWN, Maine — An Orrington woman who told police she was pregnant was arrested earlier this month on a charge of operating under the influence after a Veazie police sergeant saw her driving erratically on Stillwater Avenue in Orono and followed her to Old Town.
After she allegedly performed poorly on field sobriety tests conducted by Veazie and Old Town police, Stephanie Dickey, 26, was taken to the Old Town Police Station for additional testing, Veazie police Chief Mark Leonard said Wednesday. Dickey, who was arrested and taken to Penobscot County Jail, is out on bail.
Intoxilyzer test results indicated that Dickey’s blood-alcohol content at the time was 0.14, well above the legal limit of 0.08, Veazie police Chief Mark Leonard said Wednesday, citing a police report.
“She was eight months pregnant,” Leonard said Wednesday, citing the report.
Leonard said Thursday that Emery confirmed that Dickey told him she was pregnant at least twice before she was taken to jail — once shortly after she was pulled over and again after she was placed under arrest, at which time she specifically said she was eight months along.
Leonard said police were not able to confirm if she was, in fact, pregnant.
Penobscot County Sheriff Glenn Ross said Thursday that while Penobscot County Jail intake staff do ask female inmates if they are pregnant or have recently delivered a baby, inmates’ private medical and mental health information is not released to the media as a matter of policy.
The incidents that led to the arrest began in the early hours of Sunday, Dec. 2, according to Leonard, when Emery spotted the car Dickey was driving traveling erratically near the Mobil station on Stillwater Avenue in Orono and followed it as it turned onto Kelley Road and then onto the northbound lanes of Interstate 95
As he did so, he reportedly saw the vehicle driving at speeds that fluctuated between 55 mph and 61 mph on a stretch of highway with a posted speed limit of 65 mph, Leonard said, citing an arrest report submitted by Emery. The report also indicated that the car was weaving — crossing the centerline at least six times — and that the turn signal went on and off several times before the car left I-95 at the Stillwater exit in Old Town.
As it traveled up the ramp, the car was roughly three-quarters of the way over the fog line, Leonard said. Emery’s report said the car straddled traveling lanes after it turned onto Stillwater Avenue and headed toward downtown Old Town.
Emery then turned on the lights of his police cruiser and pulled the car over. Inside, he found Dickey behind the wheel, a man in the front passenger’s seat and a man and a woman in the back seat. He called for assistance from Old Town police. Officers Lee Miller and Wilfred King responded.
When he approached the car, Emery reportedly smelled an “extremely strong” odor of alcohol. Dickey, who reportedly said she was the designated driver, initially denied drinking but later said she had consumed two beers, Leonard said.
When asked about her less-than-stellar driving, Leonard said, Dickey said she had been distracted by the other people in her car and pointed out that she had a walking cast on her right foot, which was fractured.
Though the pregnant driver’s arrest on an OUI charge was not the first Leonard has seen in his career, it did have an unusual component to it.
“I don’t know that I’ve seen someone who was that far along,” Leonard said.
Correction: This story was amended to reflect that the woman told police she was pregnant but her condition has not been confirmed.