Three suspects with histories of DUIs arrested in Kent County

 

DOVER — Three Kent County men were charged with felony DUI after separate traffic stops last week in the Camden and Smyrna areas, according to arrest affidavits.

John W. Mereider, 59, of Camden-Wyoming, was allegedly found asleep in the driver’s seat of a Dodge Dakota at 1:15 a.m. Friday, Delaware State Police said in papers, and an ensuing investigation brought a fourth offense driving under the influence of alcohol charge, failure to have insurance identification in possession and failure to have two head lamps. Not guilty pleas were entered.

Police claimed that Mr. Mereider’s vehicle was stopped at the traffic signal of East Camden Wyoming Avenue and U.S. 13 and failed to move on a green light. Police “had to knock on the window several times to get the attention of the operator,” the affidavit stated.

“Once awake the operator could not speak clearly and displayed mumbled speech.”

A computer check indicated Mr. Mereider had DUI convictions in 1987, 2005 and 2010, authorities said.

John W. Mereider

Robert D. Cherubini, 49, of Smyrna, was charged with a fifth offense DUI Friday after an alleged incident on Providence Drive at approximately 8:26 p.m. Smyrna Police said an earlier call warned of a silver Chevrolet Silverado was traveling erratically due to a possible DUI, according to an affidavit.

Police made a traffic stop of a vehicle driven by Mr. Cherubini, documents said, and officers “noticed an empty beer can on the front passenger floor board.” Mr. Cherubini allegedly showed multiple signs of impairment, police said, and took a breath test. He refused to take an intoxilyzer at the Smyrna Police Department.

Mr. Cherubini’s two children were in the vehicle at the time, police said in documents.

According to police, Mr. Cherubini was convicted of DUI in 1995, 2001, 2009 and 2014.

Other charges against Mr. Cherubini included two counts of endangering the welfare of a child and driving while suspended or revoked. Not guilty pleas were entered.

Jason C. Underwood, 36, of Clayton, was charged with a seventh offense DUI following a traffic stop at approximately 12:13 a.m. Saturday on U.S. 13 just south of Paddock Road, Smyrna Police said. Mr. Underwood was driving a white cargo/panel van at the time that “drifted to the right riding with its right side tires on the center white dotted lines for several seconds,” the affidavit read.

“The vehicle did this twice.”

After the stop, police said “Mr. Underwood admitted to drinking and stated he should probably not be driving.” After field tests, Mr. Underwood was placed under arrest for suspicion of DUI, police said.

Records showed Mr. Underwood was convicted of DUI in 2002, 2006, 2009, 2011, 2014 and 2015.

Other charges included failure to remain in single lane and driving while suspended or revoked. Not guilty pleas were entered.

Reach staff writer Craig Anderson at canderson@newszap.com

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