06/24/2024

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Ashley Monroe

Pregnant mom of 4 with a mostly empty bottle of Crown Royal slams into 16 pedestrians, killing 2: Cops

Ashley Monroe allegedly killed two people after crashing into 16 people in Clinton County, Michigan. Her BAC level was allegedly twice the legal limit, prosecutors said. (Clinton County Sheriff’s Office)

A drunk and pregnant Michigan mom drove into a crowd of pedestrians, hitting 16 people including two fatally, the Clinton County Sheriff’s Office said. Ashley Monroe, 35, had a blood alcohol content level of 0.183, which is more than twice the legal limit, and a mostly empty bottle of Crown Royal in her purse along with two bottles of antidepressants, prosecutors said.

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    The incident happened shortly before 6:30 p.m. Saturday on South Wacousta Road near Corrison Road in Watertown Township, about 15 miles northwest of Lansing. After allegedly crashing into the victims, Monroe drove away before Clinton County Sheriff’s deputies stopped her about three minutes later. Her car had heavy front end damage and cops found hair, blood and tissue belonging to the victims, said assistant prosecutor Debra Martinez.

    Two of the victims — 30-year-old Johnathan Esch and 42-year-old Daniel Harris — died on scene. Paramedics rushed the 14 other victims, ranging in age from 2 to 61, to the hospital. A 38-year-old woman is in critical condition while the others suffered non-life-threatening injuries, deputies said.

    Monroe is charged with two counts each of operating while intoxicated and failure to stop at the scene of an accident when at fault causing death, six counts of operating while intoxicated causing serious injury and one count of failure to stop at the scene of an accident resulting in serious impairment or death. At Monroe’s Monday arraignment streamed by local CBS affiliate WLNS, Martinez asked for a bond of $500,000.

    “We think she is a serious risk to the public,” said Martinez.

    Monroe’s attorney Ronald Zawacki said his client is a mother of four children, ages 13, 11, 7 and 1, with another on the way. She has worked at the Michigan Secretary of State’s office for about a year-and-a-half, he said.

    District Court Judge Michael Clarizio set Monroe’s bond at $1 million.

    “What the court knows for sure is we have 2 individuals that died,” Clarizio said. “Two people have lost their lives prematurely. We’re not just talking about a victim we’re talking about multiple victims.”

    Monroe remains at the Clinton County Jail. A probable cause hearing is scheduled for May 30.

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