Crime

Sedro-Woolley woman accused of DUI after crash on I-5 in Bellingham, state patrol says

A state Department of Transportation camera captured the clean-up after a car crashed into a guardrail near Interstate 5’s Meridian Street exit Thursday evening, Feb. 2, 2017. The driver of the car, Cynthia G. Jensen, 38, of Sedro-Woolley, is suspected of driving under the influence, according to the Washington State Patrol.
A state Department of Transportation camera captured the clean-up after a car crashed into a guardrail near Interstate 5’s Meridian Street exit Thursday evening, Feb. 2, 2017. The driver of the car, Cynthia G. Jensen, 38, of Sedro-Woolley, is suspected of driving under the influence, according to the Washington State Patrol. Courtesy to The Bellingham Herald

A Sedro-Woolley woman is suspected of driving under the influence after crashing her car into a guard rail along Interstate 5 on Thursday evening, the Washington State Patrol said.

The crash happened just before 5 p.m. Thursday near the I-5 overpass at Meridian Street, state patrol Trooper Heather Axtman said. The driver, Cynthia G. Jensen, 38, suffered only minor injuries, Axtman said.

It was unclear whether Jensen is suspected of having been under the influence of alcohol or drugs, Axtman said.

Jensen was driving a 2000 Infiniti I series sedan southbound on I-5 when she veered left toward the median, Axtman said. The car crashed into the U-shaped guardrail just west of the overpass and landed on its wheels in the median.

Because the crash caused only minor injuries, Axtman said, no speed measurements were taken. But the crash damaged between 30 and 40 feet of guardrail posts, and sent a piece of the guardrail into the southbound lanes, Axtman said.

“It basically just blew them out of the ground,” Axtman said.

Despite being accused of driving under the influence of either drugs or alcohol, Jensen was not booked into jail after initially being detained. In cases where the driver has not had a prior DUI conviction, booking the driver into jail is at the discretion of the trooper at the scene, Axtman said.

It was unclear, Axtman said, where Jensen was released. In some cases, drivers suspected of DUI will go to a nearby hospital for a blood draw to test the alcohol content, and if they aren’t booked into jail, are released from the hospital to find a ride home.

Jensen was never admitted as a patient at St. Joseph hospital, said Hilary Andrade, a hospital spokeswoman.

In other instances, a state patrol trooper will drive the person to wherever they wish to be released, Axtman said.

Kyle Mittan: 360-756-2803, @KyleMittan

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