Around three o'clock yesterday afternoon Massachusetts State Police received several calls from drivers stating that a woman was driving erratically and had a child in her car. A state trooper heard the dispatch and observed a vehicle being operated by Cindy Abkarian weaving back and forth between lanes. The car was pulled over and the trooper observed the defendant's daughter sitting in the passenger seat unbuckled. Abkarian admitted to having used methadone and Klonopin prior to operating her vehicle. Abkarian failed the Field Sobriety Tests and admitted to having a substance abuse problem. She was arrested and charged with OUI Drugs, Possession of Class C, Child Endangerment and related Motor Vehicle Crimes in the Salem District Court.
My experience tells me that this case is not going to trial. Several factors suggest that the defendant in this case will plead guilty. Independent cell phone callers witnessing Abkarian's erratic operation, the trooper making a similar observation, her admission to using drugs when driving, the presence of drugs in plain view when she was stopped, the failed field sobriety tests and the unbuckled toddler all suggest that Abkarian should plead guilty. With a good lawyer she will likely get probation and perhaps some enhanced drug abuse treatment.