Mother faces charges for driving drunk with her child in the car and evading arrest

joinae powell

A Beaumont mother is facing felony charges for DWI and evading arrest after police say they found her slumped over and passed out with her 3-year-old child unrestrained in her vehicle, just before she attempted flee from officers checking on her welfare.

Joinae Powell, 26, of Beaumont, was indicted Sept. 20 for DWI with a child passenger, a state jail felony, and evading arrest/detention with the use of a motor vehicle, a third-degree felony. According to the PC affidavit for Powell’s arrest, Beaumont Police Officer Cody Hussey was patrolling in the 3900 block of Eastex Freeway on Nov. 21, 2016, when he saw a silver 2008 Nissan Sentra stopped at a green light at the intersection of East Lucas and Eastex. Hussey approached the vehicle and initiated a welfare check on the driver.

“When I approached the vehicle,” described Hussey, “I observed Powell slumped over the center console and her three-year-old son…sitting in her la unrestrained.”

The officer stated that the car reeked of alcohol and indicated he had to wake up Powell to talk to her. He said he saw alcoholic beverage containers littering the car and an open container in the cup holder.

The officer told Powell he was detaining her, and she could not leave. That is when he says Powell put the car in drive and sped away.

“Powell led other officers and I on a lengthy pursuit which ended after she traveled eastbound through the intersection of Laurel at I-10 service road. When Powell traveled through the intersection, she jumped two curbs and struck the median on the 200 block of I-10,” all the while with her unrestrained child in her vehicle.

Hussey reported that he believed Powell was intoxicated. He arrested her for the DWI with a child passenger and evading in a motor vehicle. She passed out in the backseat before he could read her rights, reported the officer, so that had to be done later.

Powell faces two to 10 years in prison and a fine if convicted of the third-degree felony evading charge, the greater of the two charges pending against her.