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Driver Charged with DUI, Child Endangerment after College Twp. Crash

on September 26, 2011 5:03 PM

The driver involved in a dramatic College Township crash has been charged with multiple criminal offenses, including aggravated assault by vehicle, DUI and endangering the welfare of a child.

Julie S. Dick-Carson, 38, of Huntingdon, was driving west on East College Avenue near Lemont when her 2011 Mazda sedan veered out of control July 26, police reports show. The car crossed five lanes of traffic and traveled off an embankment, plunging some 21 feet, emergency responders reported.

The sedan also was airborne for about 90 feet horizontally before landing between some trees, according to new court documents released this week. Dick-Carson's one-year-old son was in the car at the time. Both were flown to hospitals elsewhere for emergency treatment; the child's listed injuries included a skull fracture.

Capping a lengthy investigation, District Judge Leslie Dutchcot arraigned Dick-Carson on Monday on two felony, three misdemeanor and three summary charges. They include aggravated assault by vehicle while DUI, endangering the welfare of a child, recklessly endangering another person, DUI and reckless driving.

According to the criminal complaint, a can of industrial-strength, aerosol-type duster was seen between Dick-Carson's legs immediately after the crash. She initially told responders that she had bought the product for her son's cassette deck, the criminal complaint shows.

But test results later confirmed that Dick-Carson had the chemical difluoroethane in her body, according to the complaint. That's a chemical found in the duster product.

Dick-Carson told police that she had felt nauseous before the crash and must have blacked out when it happened, the complaint indicates. She also said she didn't think she had been huffing beforehand, according to the complaint.

A preliminary hearing in the matter has been scheduled for 8:30 a.m. Oct. 5 in Centre County Court. Dick-Carson has been released on her own recognizance -- on unsecured bail -- in the meantime, authorities said.

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