Girl, 12, arrested for drunken driving after leading N.M. police on high-speed chase

ALAMOGORDO, N.M. (KRQE/CNN) - Four girls between the ages of 12 and 13 face charges in what New Mexico police say was a “scary” and “concerning” incident of alleged underage drinking.

The 12-year-old driver was charged with driving while impaired and underage drinking as well as for leading police on the chase. (Source: Alamogordo Police Department/KRQE/CNN)

Alamogordo Police say they were on an unrelated call earlier this month when a suspicious car caught their attention, but even before they tried to pull it over, the car’s driver took off at a high rate of speed.

Officers chased the car until the driver lost control, plowing into a street sign and shattering the front windshield before nearly hitting two police cars.

When police moved in for the arrest, they realized the driver was a 12-year-old girl.

The 12-year-old driver was charged with driving while impaired and underage drinking as well as for leading police on the chase. (Source: Alamogordo Police Department/KRQE/CNN)
The 12-year-old driver was charged with driving while impaired and underage drinking as well as for leading police on the chase. (Source: Alamogordo Police Department/KRQE/CNN)
"For young folks to get ahold of A) alcohol, and then B) a vehicle, and then adding them both together, normally this situation is very...often it doesn't work out as well as it did in this case,” said Police Chief Brian Peete.

Officers say the girl was with three of her friends, all ages 12 or 13, and each one of them smelled like alcohol. In the car, police found Twisted-brand hard iced teas and a Smirnoff product.

Peete says the 12-year-old driver admitted to waiting until her grandfather fell asleep to take his car before picking up her friends to go drinking. All four girls were charged with underage drinking.

The driver was also charged with driving while impaired and for leading police on the chase.

"It’s scary. It’s concerning. There’s a lot of mixed emotions with it because we don’t know the situation, the dynamics at home,” Peete said. “Grateful that no one was hurt, no one was injured, but how do we move forward in trying to get these things from happening again? How can we become more involved?”

Authorities are still investigating the incident. It’s unclear what the girls’ blood alcohol content was or where they got the alcohol from.

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