Oklahoma County Clerk Carolynn Caudill, who is facing a drunken-driving complaint, ducked police two years ago after her car sideswiped another vehicle, police records show.
Caudill, 67, weaved in and out of three lanes of Lake Hefner Parkway and the highway shoulder near Britton Road the night of May 6, 2011, before striking the passenger side of another northbound car, according to an Oklahoma City police report.
Caudill then drove home and put her car in the garage.
“She was involved in the accident. She drove to her home. The witness followed her home, saw her drive into the garage and put the garage door down,” Oklahoma City police Sgt. Jennifer Wardlow said.
“At the time, she wouldn't come out of the house. Our officers never talked to her that day.”
Officers spoke only to her daughter the night of the crash and could not determine if Caudill had been drinking, Wardlow said.
“It's a misdemeanor offense, so we can't go break down the door and talk to her. She didn't want to talk to investigators,” she said.
The driver of the vehicle she hit refused treatment and the contributing factor in the crash is listed as improperly overtaking without sufficient clearance, according to the report.
Caudill was facing a count of leaving the scene of an accident in Oklahoma City municipal court, but pleaded no contest to speeding and was given unsupervised probation, court administrator Stacey Davis said.
She completed probation on June 7, 2012, he said.
Tuesday, Caudill was found in a parked car that had been heavily damaged on the passenger side. It was on a lawn at 7949 N McKinley Ave. Police noted a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage on Caudill and that her eyes were bloodshot and watery.
She was booked into the Oklahoma County jail on complaints of driving under the influence of alcohol and leaving the scene of an accident without required notice. She was released on $1,270 bail about four hours later.
She was not given a field sobriety test and declined a blood-alcohol breath test. Blood was not drawn for testing because it was not required in the circumstances, Wardlow said.
Her arraignment date is Nov. 12 in Oklahoma City municipal court.
Caudill's attorney, Shawn Jefferson, said she is sorry about what happened.
“Obviously she made a mistake,” he said. “It's a tragic situation. It's a sad deal.”
Accident reports show that she was involved in two additional accidents, one in 1995 and another in 2000. Neither of them indicates erratic driving by Caudill.
Caudill could face the possibility of being removed from office for official misconduct under state law.
Caudill did not return calls for comment.
Caudill was not at work Friday, said Danny Lambert, chief deputy finance director for the Oklahoma County clerk's office. Lambert said he did not know if she was in the office Tuesday or Wednesday, and could not say if she had taken leave.
Caudill took office in January for her fifth term as county clerk. She is one of eight elected county officials, including the three county commissioners and Sheriff John Whetsel.
District 2 Commissioner Brian Maughan said the elected officials serve independently and have no authority over each other with regard to disciplinary matters.
Staff Writers Bill Crum and Tim Willert.