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DWI arrest made after car strikes tree, leaves scene

TAP Chatham

Friday, July 12, 2013 • 5:50pm

CHATHAM, NJ - Karen Roche, 63, of Chatham was arrested and charged with a number of traffic violations, including Driving While Intoxicated and Leaving the Scene of an Accident, on Thursday, July 11, after Chatham police responded to a reported accident on Ogden Street.

On July 11 at 5:56 p.m., patrols responded to Ogden Street on a report of car that ran into a tree. Upon their arrival, there was evidence of an accident, but the vehicle had left the scene. Witnesses were able to provide a description of the car and driver. A short time later Patrolman Roy George found a vehicle and driver parked in the lot of the Cottage Deli on South Passaic Avenue that matched the description.

The vehicle had heavy front-end damage and the driver, Karen Roche, showed signs of intoxication. Following a brief investigation at the scene, Roche was arrested for DWI.

She was brought to headquarters where she was processed. As a result of this incident, Roche was charged with the following: DWI, Reckless Driving, Open Container of Alcohol in a vehicle, No Liability Insurance, Careless Driving, Leaving the Scene of an Accident and Failure to Report an Accident. She was released to a family member pending further court action.

On July 9 at 3 p.m., Patrolman Roy George was out of his patrol car while conducting an investigation at the CVS parking lot on Main Street. At that time he observed a 2000 Lincoln pull out of a parking spot and strike his patrol vehicle. The Lincoln was driven by Diane Lieb, 83, of Florham Park. No one was injured and Lieb was issued a summons for Failure to have an Insurance ID Card. 

On July 6 at 11:25 a.m., Patrolman Brian Maher investigated a two-car accident on Main Street near Fairmount Avenue. A 2005 Dodge driven by Vito Milano,  35, of South Plainfield, was heading east on Main Street when another car pulled out of a parking space and hit his vehicle. The other car was a 2012 Acura driven by Leslie Baer, 60, of New Providence. No one was injured, the Baer vehicle was towed from the scene, and Baer was issued a summons for Careless Driving.

Report was prepared by Det. Lt. Kevin O'Shea (retired) of the Chatham Borough Police Department.

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