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Sunday, January 16, 2022

Snowbird suffers panic attack during drunk driving arrest in The Villages

Laurie Freedman
Laurie Freedman

A snowbird suffered a panic attack during a drunk driving arrest in The Villages.

Laurie Freedman, 62, of Salem, N.H., was at the wheel of a 2007 Volkswagen at 10:45 p.m. Wednesday when she failed to maintain a single lane while traveling at 35 miles per hour in a 45 mph zone on U.S. Hwy. 27/441 at Main Street at the entrance to Spanish Springs, according to an arrest report from the Lady Lake Police Department. A traffic stop was initiated near the Boone Gate on the Historic Side of The Villages.

Freedman’s pupils were dilated and her speech was slurred. She was invited to participate in field sobriety exercises, but she claimed she was suffering a panic attack. Lake County Fire Rescue was called to the scene and evaluated Freedman, but she refused any treatment. She also refused to take part in field sobriety exercises and claimed, “I only had one glass of wine.”

Freedman also refused to provide a breath sample. “I’m not doing anything without my lawyer,” she told police.

She was arrested on a charge of driving under the influence. She was booked at the Lake County Jail on $1,000 bond.

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