Case is delayed for SUV owner

The Baltimore Sun

The owner of a sport utility vehicle that that police say was involved in the hit-and-run death of a Maryland Transportation Authority Police officer on New Year's Eve was granted a postponement on unrelated traffic charges in Harford County District Court yesterday.

Kerri J. King, a 35-year-old mother of four from Elkton, faces two charges in a Nov. 20 incident in Havre de Grace, where she was ticketed for driving on a suspended license and driving 59 mph in a 35 mph zone, authorities said.

King, listed as the owner of the SUV, was arrested at her Elkton home the day after the hit-and-run on a failure-to-appear warrant, stemming from an arrest on a DUI charge in Baltimore on Sept. 27. She is in a Baltimore jail.

She has not been charged in the death of Maryland Transportation Authority Cpl. Courtney G. Brooks.

The officer was struck by an SUV as he set out cones on Interstate 95 to prevent trucks from coming onto the Interstate 395 ramp during the New Year's Eve celebrations in Baltimore. Brooks, 40, was buried Monday.

In the incident Sept. 27, King was arrested after a Transportation Authority officer spotted her sitting in a 1997 Suzuki parked on the shoulder of northbound I-95 at the exit for the I-395 ramp. The officer wrote in charging documents that King's speech was "slurred," there were several liquor bottles in the vehicle's back seat, and she told the officer she and a friend were heading home to Elkton after "dancing on The Block."

Harford County prosecutor Dair Pillai recommended that bond be set for King on the county charges, describing the defendant as a "threat to the public and community."

In addition to the DUI charge in Baltimore and the speeding charge in Harford, King also has three other driving-related charges in Wisconsin from 2005, Pillai said in court yesterday.

Harford County District Court Judge John Dunnigan set her bond at $25,000.

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