A 27-year-old Portage resident is facing a charge of operating while intoxicated after crashing a pickup truck into the building at 1315 Broadway late Thursday afternoon, Oct. 26, the Chesterton Police Department is reporting.
Police say on Friday the report on the accident has not yet been completed, but that it occurred on Thursday at approximately 5:20 p.m. The motorist was eastbound on Broadway, having just left the Mortgage Inn, 1400 Broadway, when she lost control of the vehicle, scraped a NIPSCO pole on the south side of the road, then “struck the apparently vacant building”, located at the southeast corner of Broadway and South 14th Street, according to police.
The motorist advised the investigating officer that the truck belonged to her fiancé, that it’s more powerful than her own car, and that she was “unable to stop it”.
On impact, the pickup truck struck an overhang and then went through the exterior wall, coming to rest partially inside the building.
Police say the motorist advised that she’d consumed two beers but hadn’t had a drink for “about an hour.” Police say she registered a blood alcohol content of 0.187 percent on a portable breath test, then a BAC of 0.199 percent on a blood draw conducted at an area hospital.
While at the hospital the investigating officer was informed that the motorist would require tests and scans for possible injuries sustained in the crash. The officer left the motorist in the care of staff but did tell her that a charge of OWI would be forwarded to the Porter County Prosecutor’s Office.
Police say the results of the investigation would be forwarded as well to the Indiana State Excise Police.
At 7:30 p.m. the Chesterton Fire Department received confirmation that the building had been boarded and that NIPSCO had “ensured the integrity of the utilities serving the building.”