Marijuana found in car that fatally struck Delray Beach police officer

Driver of car refused to submit to DUI test, police report reveals

By Peter Burke - Managing Editor

Officer Christine Braswell was killed and Officer Bernenda Marc was seriously injured in a motor scooter crash in Key West.

KEY WEST, Fla. - The driver of a car that struck two Delray Beach police officers who were riding a motor scooter last weekend while vacationing in Key West had marijuana in her car and refused to submit to a DUI test, a police report obtained Thursday by Local 10 News revealed.

Officer Christine Braswell, 40, was killed and Officer Bernenda Marc, 25, was seriously injured in the crash early Saturday morning on Truman Avenue.

According to an incident report from the Key West Police Department, Lacy Morris, 31, of Sugarloaf Key, was driving her 2006 Nissan Altima west on Truman Avenue when she turned into the path of Braswell and Marc, who were traveling east on a Yamaha Zuma.

Officer Jesse Young wrote in his report that Morris' eyes were "extremely red, glassy and bloodshot." Young wrote that he also smelled alcohol on her breath when she spoke.

Morris told Young that she was turning into the parking lot of a nearby Dion's Quick Mart because she and a passenger wanted to get some fried chicken, the report said. Morris claimed that she thought the scooter was speeding but thought it had plenty of time to stop and that it wouldn't crash into her car, Young wrote.

Young said the tire marks left behind by the scooter were about 20 to 30 feet long.

During a search of the car, another officer found "a fresh but barely smoked marijuana cigarette" on the driver's side floorboard, the report said.

Morris refused to perform a field-sobriety test or submit to a blood sample, so police obtained a search warrant from a judge to have a paramedic draw her blood, the report said.

Braswell died Saturday night at Jackson Memorial Hospital's Ryder Trauma Center in Miami. Marc remained in critical but stable condition at Jackson South Community Hospital at last check.

Braswell's body received a police escort Tuesday as it was moved from Miami to a Lake Worth funeral home. Braswell was hired by the Delray Beach Police Department in 2005 and was a SWAT sniper.

Morris was not arrested but could face charges pending toxicology results.

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