|Tow trucks and police help clean up the wreckage from the DUI accident on December 2, 2015. FTM file.|
April Rooke was arrested on the scene and charged with DUI, Possession Of Heroin, Operating On A Suspended Or Revoked License, Failure To Maintain Insurance and Possession Of A Controlled Substance Not In Proper Container.
|April Rooke. Campbell County Detention Center.|
According to Lt. Rich Whitford of the Fort Thomas Police, it wasn't clear if she passed or just lost control of the car. Whitford said both Rooke and her passenger admitted to purchasing heroin in Over-The-Rhine and then using the drugs before getting into the car and traveling back to the VA Hospital, where they had been staying.
"This could have been tragic. It was a half an hour before school let out and there would have been 100 kids walking right past the sidewalk where she wrecked. We're lucky that she didn't kill kids on her way back after using," he said.
Peter Moore, owner of The Blue Marble, did not witness the crash but was concerned with the timing. "Luckily only empty parked cars were damaged. Most thankful that accident occurred at 2:30 before sidewalk was full of children walking home from school," he said.
Whitford also implored residents to alert authorities if they suspect someone is driving under the influence.
"You'll see someone do something we call 'the heroin nod' where they'll literally just nod out and lose consciousness while they are driving," he said. "If you see erratic driving like this, stay back from them and call 911 immediately so we can get there and try to end the situation before they kill themselves or anybody else. Tell them what you see and where you are."
Whitford said that they received a call after the wreck had occurred from someone who had previously witnessed the erratic driving, but didn't call police because they weren't sure if the person was under the influence.
"She said she didn't want to bother the police and that she had tried honking to get her attention to get her to stop, but absolutely call us. You aren't bothering us, this is our job," he said.
The license plate number, state of origin, vehicle make, model, and color are also helpful for police to find the offender.