For the second time in 11 days, Buffalo police have arrested a mother for driving drunk with children in the car, authorities said Wednesday.
In the latest incident, Latrice D. Robinson was stopped with her four children, ranging in age from 2 to 15, after she “recklessly speeded” past police officers who were involved in a traffic stop at 12:15 a.m. Monday on Bailey Avenue between East Delavan Avenue and Genesee Street.
To make matters worse, police said, the 31-year-old South Buffalo mother was speeding despite a flat rear driver’s side tire.
When Officer Kenneth Agee, a member of Strike Force, stopped Robinson on the 2100 block of Bailey, he detected a strong odor of alcohol, and when Robinson stepped from her 2005 Oldsmobile and attempted to perform a field sobriety test, she staggered, the officer said.
Accident Investigator Santos Diaz later performed a Breathalyzer test, which determined her blood alcohol content was 0.15 percent, almost twice the legal limit.
A check of her driving record determined Robinson, a Lockwood Avenue resident, had previously been convicted of driving while intoxicated June 26, 2009. Because of that conviction and because she had her children in the car Monday, she was charged under the state’s Leandra’s Law with multiple counts of felony drunken driving, according to Lt. Thomas J. Leatherbarrow, commander of the Buffalo Police Accident Investigation Unit.
Robinson also was charged with four counts of endangering the welfare of her children, speeding and failure to yield to an emergency vehicle.
When asked if she had been drinking, Robinson told police that earlier in the evening she was at a relative’s home and “did have a drink,” according to a police report.
At about 1:30 a.m. April 4, a mother with her three young children in her car crashed into three parked cars on Hirschbeck Avenue in the Broadway-Bailey neighborhood, injuring the youngsters. Melissa Ruth Russell, 23, of Gilbert Street in the Babcock-Clinton neighborhood, was charged with felony drunken driving under Leandra’s Law, and three misdemeanor counts of endangering the welfare of her children.
Accident Investigator Martin Forero said adults knowingly place their children in harm’s way when they drive a vehicle under the influence of alcohol.
“In both these cases, we have requested investigations by Child Protective Services,” Forero said. “Children are particularly susceptible to injuries in automobile accidents.”