A West Virginia driver is facing charges in Greene County for allegedly driving drunk, crashing his vehicle into a mailbox and becoming airborne off an embankment with his 5-year-old daughter in the back seat Monday.
James Philip Pfeffer, 43, of Maidsville, told Greene County Regional police he had been driving his daughter to gymnastics class just after 5 p.m. on Buckeye Road in Perry Township.
Police said a motorist flagged them down to report an erratic driver who struck a mailbox and was passing vehicles. The witness told police the driver had been going about 70 mph when he went off the roadway, up a hillside and became airborne before returning to the road, according to the criminal complaint.
Police caught up with the vehicle at the intersection of Buckeye Road and Mason Dixon Highway in Monongalia County, W.Va. Police said Pfeffer failed to put the vehicle in park and gave police a false identification, claiming to be his twin brother. Police said Pfeffer appeared to be intoxicated, and that there was fresh mud and dirt along the passenger side of his car.
The child’s mother came to the scene of the traffic stop and took custody of the girl, police said.
Monongalia County Sheriff’s deputies arrived on the scene to assist, police said. They gave Pfeffer a field sobriety test and a portable breath test, which showed a 0.2 percent blood-alcohol content, according to the complaint.
The sheriff’s office confirmed that Pfeffer’s license had been suspended for a previous DUI.
Greene County Regional police charged him with endangering the welfare of children, DUI, giving a false identification to law enforcement and 11 summary traffic violations.