Local USVI News

Woman in Ford Focus is Struck by Two Vehicles Being Driven by Drunk Drivers

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ST. THOMAS — It was an unlucky day for the female driver of a blue Ford Focus on January 1 after it was struck by two other vehicles — both of which were being operated by drunk drivers.

On Wednesday January 4, the two drivers appeared before a Superior Court judge to face charges following an investigation into the automobile collision.

Todd Bauman was arrested and charged with driving while under the influence and negligent driving, while David John Cobb was arrested and charged with driving under the influence, negligent driving, operating a vehicle without a license, operating a vehicle without insurance and operating an unregistered vehicle.

According to the probable cause fact sheets, police were dispatched to Nicholas Friday Drive near Senior Pizza to investigate the collision. Contact was made with the driver of a 2008 Blue Ford Focus, whose vehicle’s right side was in contact with another blue Ford that was being driven by a woman.

The woman told police that the driver of the 2008 Ford was David Cobb who was standing on the sidewalk to the east of the collision. She told police that Cobb had struck her vehicle.

Police then approached Cobb and asked him if he was the driver of the blue Ford Focus and he said yes. An onlooker also identified Cobb as the driver of the Ford Focus, saying that she was in the area of Sapphire Beach Resort when she saw Cobb driving erratically and followed him up until he collided with the other blue Ford being driven by the woman.

While speaking to Cobb, police could smell a strong odor of alcohol coming from him, according to the probable cause fact sheet. His speech was slurred and he had trouble maintaining his balance. Police advised Cobb that the standardized field sobriety test would be performed on him, however Cobb refused to take the test. He was transported to the Traffic Investigation Bureau and advised of the chemical testing of his blood. He refused to take that test also and was placed under arrest.

An Investigation revealed that Cobbs had no valid driver’s license and the vehicle he was driving was unregistered and uninsured.

While conducting the initial investigation, a woman approached police and informed them of a vehicle that had collided with the rear of the woman’s blue Ford. That vehicle was a blue Jeep Wrangler and was being driven by Todd Bauman.

Police approached Bauman, who was in the driver’s seat, and asked that he turn off the vehicle and commanded him to step out of it. While stepping out of the vehicle, Bauman stumbled. Bauman had a strong odor of alcohol and his speech was slurred, but he informed police that he was not the one driving the vehicle.

Bauman was informed that the standardized field sobriety tests would be performed on him, to which he consented. He could not perform the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus test and was transported to the Traffic Investigation Bureau. While there, he refused to continue with the remainder of the tests as well as the chemical intoximeter test, and Bauman was placed under arrest.

In court on Wednesday, a judge ruled that both men post $1,000 cash to secure their bail. They are barred from leaving the St. Thomas- St. John District without the court’s written permission and must report to the Office of Probation once a week. Bauman’s driving privileges will be suspended for 90 days and Cobb is not permitted to drive at all while the matter is pending. Cobb must also hand in his passport once it becomes available to him.

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