TAUNTON (CBS) — A woman pleaded not guilty to charges of drunk driving in a bus crash that left several people seriously injured over the weekend. In Taunton District Court Monday, prosecutors said Christy Gilpatrick, 27, of Warren, Rhode Island caused the crash on Route 24 in Berkley late Saturday night.
According to prosecutors, around 9:45 p.m., Gilpatrick’s Subaru Impreza collided with a school bus, forcing it to roll over, and both vehicles ended up in the woods. Twenty-three people were injured, including children. The bus was returning from the La Salette Shrine in Attleboro and headed to Tiverton, Rhode Island.
“At this point, we do know that there was serious injury to multiple occupants of bus, including broken ribs, broken jaw, crushed vertebrate, blood around the lungs, and others of the same magnitude,” said a prosecutor.
In the days before her arraignment, State Police had hesitated to declare that she was responsible for the crash. Prosecutors described in court that Gilpatrick hit a black car, spun out of control, and swerved in front of the bus, causing the crash.
Police said she admitted to having one drink but she failed field sobriety tests. Prosecutors asked she be held on $10,000 bail.
Gilpatrick’s defense told the court she comforted injured children at the scene and asked her bail to be set at $2,000. The judge established a $2,500 bail.
She must also attend AA meetings, appear at probation, and will be subject to random alcohol screenings. Gilpatrick also cannot drive without a valid license, the judge determined.
Gilpatrick was charged with operating under the influence of alcohol second offense, negligent operation of a motor vehicle, marked lanes violation, and operating under the influence causing serious injury.
This is Gilpatrick’s second OUI offense, she was arrested last year in Rhode Island.
A pretrial hearing was scheduled for Feb. 7.