Douglas Lindsey, 68, was booked into Fresno County jail on charges of driving under the influence of Hydrocodone, better known as Vicodin. Police say he was responsible for a crash on March 8 that left 16-year-old Shaela Warkentin in the hospital.
The crash happened near Barstow and Maroa in North Fresno. Shaela was a passenger in a Mustang being driven by her sister, Karissa. The girls were stopped at a red light when a Ford pickup driven by Lindsey rammed into the back of the car. Shaela was trapped in the back of the car for an hour because the Mustang was so mangled.
Shaela still remains hospitalized to this day.
“We’ll get through it, day by day. We do have a strong faith in our Lord Jesus Christ,” said Shaela’s father, Ken Warkentin, about the ordeal his family has gone through.
Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer said that a blood test on Lindsey, which showed he was under the influence of Vicodin, led to the DUI felony charge.
“He had been taking that drug for the past 10 years as a result of a back injury,” Dyer said.
Dyer is hoping this case will serve as a warning to others who drive under the influence of prescription drugs.
“What we want to do is prevent other tragedies such as this from ever occurring again,” he said.
Lindsey already posted his $13,500 bail. He will be in court on April 27 to face the DUI charge.