By Michael Konopasek, News 9
MIDWEST CITY, Oklahoma -- Police arrested a Midwest City mother Wednesday, who police say tried to pick up her daughter from school drunk.
Police say the woman had a blood alcohol content four times the legal limit, and attribute the quick thinking and actions of a concerned citizen and school officials in preventing a 10-year-old girl from getting into a car with the drunk driver.
School officials say safety is a priority at Country Estates Elementary School in Midwest City. On Wednesday, that meant protecting one student from her own mother.
"We were able to avert what we think might have been a tragedy," said Brandon Clabes, Midwest City police chief.
School officials say they received an anonymous tip that a mother would be picking up her daughter from school drunk.
"It's heartbreaking that our students have to endure those types of things," said Patrice Tucker, Country Estates Elementary School principal.
Tucker says both administrators at the school and school district were able to get the tip to police before the end of the school day.
"We're very fortunate that school officials acted quickly [and] gave us the information because think in your mind of all the bad things that could have happened," said Clabes.
Clabes says the school was able to give police a description of the woman's car. Shortly thereafter, an officer found Diane Marie Martin with a blood alcohol content level of .32%.
"How do you even get to school to pick up your child that … drunk," said parent Edith Sparks.
Parents say they couldn't believe it.
"To hear that, [it] is completely crazy," said Sparks.
Police arrested Martin on the scene, directly in front of her daughter's school.
"The sad part about the case is obviously [the daughter] was there when her mother was arrested, but we did take her into the school to prevent her from seeing that," said Clabes.
Police say Martin was arrested once before in Cleveland County for a DUI in 1989.
Martin has been released from jail on a $1,000 bond. Police say they have made a referral to DHS concerning the mother. The child went home from school with a relative.
Police plan to turn the case over to the district attorney's office later this week and say the charge may be raised to aggravated DUI because her blood alcohol content was so high.