Drunk driver mows down Lents streetlamp

Find out how the DWII driver reacted, after this wreck …

Police close down SE Woodstock Boulevard, just east of SE 92nd Avenue, after a drunk driver smashed down a lamppost.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

Part of the charm of the Lents Town Center are the old-fashioned streetlamps that dot the sidewalks, which provide “pedestrian scale” illumination.

One of those lighting poles was taken out of service on the evening of November 1, at about 7:15 p.m. It happened as the driver of a Kia Optima was heading eastbound on the SE Woodstock Boulevard section of the Lents Town Center couplet, just east of SE 92nd Avenue.

After it rams a streetlight post, this car is no longer drivable.

“The car swerved from the middle lane to the [far right] lane, like she was trying to get on the freeway,” said eyewitness Jeremiah Green, who said he was waiting for a bus.

“The car popped up on the curb, and the passenger’s side just smashed into the pole,” Green said. “It knocked the pole so hard, the glass [globe] fell off, and smashed on the sidewalk.”

What was even more astounding, Green said, “She got out of the car, and staggered away, saying something like, ‘I just can’t get another ‘de-wee’ [Driving While under the Influence of Intoxicants, or DWII] on my record’.”

This smashed car is the least of the drivers’ worries, if she is indeed found guilty of drunken driving.

Evidently, the driver didn’t get far; officers found the suspected intoxicated driver, and whisked her off to the Portland Police Bureau East Precinct office to meet with at Traffic Division investigator.

Days later, this street light has not yet been replaced. And we don’t know whether she has gotten another “de-wee”. But we’d guess, based on what we learned at the scene of the crash, that she has.

© 2015 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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