Monday 26 September 2016

Nun charged with drink driving 'can't remember anything about her arrest'

Published 15/04/2016 | 08:17

Dashcam footage captured Sister Miller being arrested at the scene
Dashcam footage captured Sister Miller being arrested at the scene

A nun who has been charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, fleeing the scene and failing to report the accident said she can't remember anything about her arrest.

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Philadelphia nun Sister Kimberly Miller (41) said she blacked out for four hours during the November crash, but claims the blackout was caused by insomnia drug Ambien.

“At first I thought it was a dream because I had handcuffs on,” she testified in Washington Township Court at a six-hour trial this week.

“I was in my habit. I’m a nun.”

“I don’t understand how I got to New Jersey. I couldn’t figure out where all the time went,” she added.

Police claimed Miller was driving erratically in the early morning hours of November 15, before she backed into the doors of a car repair shop.

They reported the nun to have failed a field sobriety test at the scene and said her blood alcohol concentration was twice the legal limit of 0.08 percent. She was later charged with DUI.

The arrest was captured on dashcam video which shows a disorientated Miller walk around the front of her car.

Miller told the court she has a history of sleepwalking as well as a painful arthritic condition that she takes medicine for.

She said she often drinks wine to help her sleep.

She told the court she went to an event at a children's bookstore, before going back to her convent where she put on her night clothes, drank a glass of wine, took an Ambien and went to sleep.

She claims the next thing she remembers was being at a police station in New Jersey and speaking to a police officer.

“I asked him where I was,” Miller told the court.

“I asked him how I got there. I asked him what time it was.”

Witnesses and officers testified Miller's speech was slurred, her eyes were droopy and they smelled alcohol when they stopped her car.

Students at the little Flower Catholic High School for Girls in Philadelphia where she teaches has launched an online petition to keep her job. It has over 2,000 signatures so far.

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