A Mauston woman is charged with her 3rd operating while under the influence after allegedly blowing a 0.258 during a traffic stop while driving with a minor in the vehicle.
Christal Lamothe, 34, of Mauston is charged with felony operating a motor vehicle while under the influence, third offense, with a minor child in the vehicle; and misdemeanor operating a motor vehicle while revoked with revocation due to alcohol, controlled substance, or refusal.
If convicted of the felony charge she faces up to two years but at least 90 days in jail and a fine of up to $4,000 but at least $1,200.
According to the criminal complaint:
At about 12:06 a.m. June 20, Deputy Justin Wegmueller of the Juneau County Sheriff’s Office was driving on Highway 58 approaching Highway G in the town of Germantown when he observed a vehicle heading towards him.
Wegmueller turned off his high beam lights, and the approaching vehicle did the same a short time later. The vehicle then flashed the lights at Wegmueller before turning them off again, and at a distance of about 100 feet the vehicle activated the high beams and left them on until passing Wegmueller. Wegmueller turned around, activated his emergency lights and initiated a traffic stop.
Upon approaching the vehicle Wegmueller observed three occupants, with a male passenger in the front seat smoking a cigarette, a female driver and a minor passenger in the backseat. The driver was asked for her driver’s license, from which she was identified as Christal Lamothe.
Lamothe told Wegmueller they had been camping at Little Yellow River Campground. The minor felt ill so Lamothe was driving the child home. Wegmueller returned to his vehicle and ran Lamothe’s information, receiving a return that Lamothe has a revoked license for a prior OWI conviction.
Wegmueller returned to the vehicle and explained to Lamothe he would be placing her under arrest for driving with a revoked license. As the passenger finished his cigarette Wegmueller began to detect the odor of intoxicants, and noticed Lamothe’s eyes as bloodshot and glassy.
Asked if she had anything to drink that night, Lamothe responded that she had not. When asked to step out of the vehicle, Lamothe was unsteady and smelled of intoxicants. She again said she did not have anything to drink when asked.
Lamothe was transported to the Juneau County Jail. After arriving at the jail, Wegmueller again asked Lamothe if she had anything to drink, to which she replied she had not. Lamothe assented to performing a preliminary breath test, the results of which returned a 0.258 blood alcohol concentration. Lamothe agreed to perform standard field sobriety testing, and then admitted to having a mixed drink earlier in the night.
During field sobriety testing, Wegmueller observed a total of 14 clues indicating Lamothe was under the influence.
Lamothe refused a blood draw. A warrant was approved at 1:25 a.m. for the draw, after which Mauston EMS performed the blood draw.