Woman arrested on drug, traffic charges after driving away from collision in hospital parking lot


DOVER — A 40-year-old Dover woman was arrested on drug and traffic charges after allegedly driving away from a collision in a Bayhealth-Kent General Hospital parking garage Thursday morning, police said in court documents.

Stefanie A. Hughes, of the first block of Evans Turn Drive, was taken into custody by Dover Police Department officers and K-9 Gerome after a struggle that concluded a vehicle pursuit, according to an affidavit of probable cause.

Ms. Hughes pleaded not guilty to nine alleged offenses during an arraignment, and was held in detention in lieu of a $3,520 secured bond.

Charges, among others, included disregarding a police officer signal, possession of heroin, resisting arrest, possession of drug paraphernalia, driving under the influence of alcohol and leaving the scene of a property collision accident.

The alleged sequence began at 11:25 a.m. when Dover Police was called to the scene of a reported suspicious vehicle with windows open and blood on the exterior at Bayhealth-Kent General Hospital at 640 S. State St., authorities said.

As a Dover Police officer arrived, a vehicle was seen leaving the garage and hospital staff said a parked vehicle had been struck, documents said.

An officer exited the garage in a Dover Police vehicle, activated emergency equipment and a siren in an attempt to stop the suspected vehicle at South Governors and Waples avenues, authorities said.

The vehicle continued for another three-quarters of a mile, police said, before stopping at the entrance of Creekstone Center on South Governors Avenue, police said.

“The suspect exited the vehicle on command but appeared confused and was not following orders given by (two Dover PD officers),” according to the affidavit of probable cause.

“The suspect walked to the front of her vehicle stating she had to shut the trunk of her vehicle and again refused to comply with orders …”

Eventually, police said in papers, a struggle ensued before Ms. Hughes was taken into custody at approximately 11:36 a.m. Police said Ms. Hughes was taken back to the hospital for injuries, and a blood search warrant was obtained and a sample taken.

“While Hughes was at the hospital, a bag of suspected heroin and an unknown pill fell out of her clothing and onto the hospital bed,” police said in papers.

Also, police said, an unknown pill was located and later determined to be a prescription ibuprofen that Ms. Hughes was not authorized to have.

“Hughes admitted that the heroin and the pill were hers after she had been read Miranda (rights),” police wrote in documents.

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