Ala. Woman On Midnight Horse Ride Charged With DUI After Ramming Police Car

Wednesday, April 4th 2007, 7:06 pm
By: News On 6

SYLVANIA, Ala. (AP) _ A woman used a horse to ram a police car during a midnight ride through town and was charged with driving under the influence, police said.

DUI charges can apply even if the vehicle has four legs instead of wheels, Chief Brad Gregg said Tuesday.

Police in the northeast Alabama town received a call around midnight Saturday about someone riding a horse on a street, Gregg said.

``Cars were passing by having to avoid it, and almost hitting the horse,'' he said.

An officer found Melissa Byrum York, 40, on horseback and tried to stop her, Gregg said.

``She wouldn't stop,'' he said. ``She kept riding the horse and going on.''

After ramming the police car with the horse and riding away, York tried to jump off but caught her foot in a stirrup, Gregg said. The officer took her into custody and found she had crystal methamphetamine, a small amount of marijuana, pills and a small pipe, the chief said.

The horse, which belonged to York, ``wasn't in the best of health, but it's still alive,'' Gregg said.

York was charged with DUI on suspicion of riding the horse under the influence of a controlled substance; the nature of the substance was unclear Wednesday. She also was charged with drug possession, possession of drug paraphernalia, resisting arrest, assault, attempting to elude police and cruelty to animals.

York was released from the DeKalb County jail on a $4,000 bond and was transferred to a jail in another county on an unrelated charge, Gregg said.

It was unclear Wednesday whether York had a lawyer. A message was left with DeKalb sheriff's officials.