News 12 First at Five / Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2011
AUGUSTA, Ga. -- An Augusta mother is facing a list of charges after deputies say she was drunk behind the wheel with her kids in the car.
Meanwhile, another mother will never get to face a judge. Investigators say the decision to drink and drive may have cost her life.
The most recent accident happened Tuesday night. Investigators say a woman pulled into the path of a logging truck. She had her friend's 7-year-old boy with her and deputies say she may have been drunk.
In September, 27-year-old Chasity Weston slammed her car into a ditch before it caught fire. Deputies say she was also drunk and had both her children in the back seat.
After more than two months of healing, the children are OK, but deputies arrested their mother Wednesday.
Confined to a wheelchair, Weston hid her face from News 12 cameras as she was booked into jail. Weston's legs were crushed and badly burned in the fiery September wreck that ejected both of her young children.
"She lost control of her car, it went into the ditch ... it flipped at least two times that we know of," explained Richmond County Lt. Randy Prickett.
Weston was just released from the hospital. Days after the wreck, deputies weren't sure if Weston or her 4-year-old son would even survive.
"Luckily everybody did pull through, some with injuries and others are OK but I mean ... they still have the scars of going through what they went through," Prickett said.
Scars because their mother is accused of driving them around drunk that night. If convicted, it will be Weston's second DUI offense in a year.
"Here, lately, we've had a few that we've had that have had multiple offenses in the past. They just don't learn I guess. I don't know what it is," Prickett said.
Weston's arrest comes just a day after another bad crash on Mike Padgett Highway. Tuesday night's accident killed 30-year-old Marquieta Cribbs. Investigators say Cribbs may have been drinking when she pulled out in front of a logging truck.
"We have observed a very strong odor of alcohol that come from her at the scene," Prickett said. "We have sent the results off to be tested but we believe her to be intoxicated, DUI."
Cribbs also had a child in the car, her friend's 7-year-old son, who was not injured in the accident.
"We are investigating the fact that the mother of the 7-year-old was aware that the driver had been drinking. She has a responsibility to make sure that her child is safe at all times," Prickett explained.
Two women, two fiery crashes -- one is dead and the other's life will never be the same.
"They may have a few drinks and think they're OK, a lot of people think that when they've been drinking they're OK, and they're not. So they decide to get into the car and drive and unfortunately they do it with kids in the car sometimes," he added.
Weston is facing eight charges including serious injury by vehicle, DUI and endangering a child. Investigators say the two children were not in child safety seats and were ejected.
Investigators have charged the mother of that 7-year-old child from Tuesday night's accident. Monique Wiggins, 23, was arrested for reckless conduct in connection to the fatality Tuesday night for knowingly allowing her son to leave with a person that was intoxicated.
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