A mother from Boynton Beach, Florida was charged with child abuse and driving under the influence after being caught driving in a weaving fashion on local roads. Her capture later led to her crazy-eyed mugshot and a video going viral. In the dash cam video released of 31-year-old Brandy Lerma getting placed in the police car after being found too drunk to drive, Lerma screamed from the back of the vehicle, “I will kill you! I will kill you!”. Later, upon the police officer objecting to Lerma kicking the car, she responded, “I don’t care!” In the video, she is also heard screaming, “Who is taking care of my child?!” When Lerma was pulled over, police not only found the intoxicated Lerma, but a three-year-old in the back without a child safety device or seat belt of any kind.
Lerma was first spotted by Juan Martinez, a local tow truck driver. Martinez says he saw the golden Chevrolet Malibu zigzagging along the road, almost hitting four cars in the process. Martinez expressed the logical worry that someone would end up dead due to Lerma’s reckless driving. Martinez also informed police officers that he thought he saw a child in the back seat. According to police reports, during the pullover, Lerma obviously smelled of alcohol and had trouble grabbing her driver’s license or even speaking coherently. As the officer told it, “The odor grew stronger as she spoke.” This event happened during what appears to be the middle of the day.
During a subsequent 20-minute field sobriety test, Lerma is seen stumbling as she was being asked to follow a pen with her eyes, as well as falling multiple times while trying to walk in a straight line. After initially trying to defend herself by saying she had only drunk “maybe a little,” Lerma later admitted to consuming Percocet, Xanax and at least two shots of Fireball. The Breathalyzer results later came in, marking her at a peak blood alcohol level of .200. For reference, the legal blood alcohol level limit in the state of Florida is .080. Lerma, who reportedly has a history of traffic citations, is currently free after making a bond set at $3,000, and is expected to appear in court sometime in September. According to The Palm Beach Post, Lerma was previously cited for carrying children in her vehicle without a seatbelt.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Florida ranks slightly above the national average in adults who have reported driving after drinking too much. Particularly, more people in the 21-34 age bracket die of drunk driving in Florida per capita than the national baseline (8.0 per 100,000 in Florida, in contrast with 6.7 per 100,000 in the United States overall).