ANOKA, Minn. - An Anoka County woman is charged with impaired driving and child endangerment following an incident that left her car burning in a ditch.
Prosecutors filed three criminal counts against 42-year-old Tonia Rae Dockter of Andover in connection with the incident, which took place on Saturday.
Witnesses tell police they saw a 2012 Toyota swerving down the road before it crashed and careened into a ditchnear the intersection of Anoka County Road 9 and 184th Lane Northwest in Oak Grove Township.
Some of those witnesses were following the vehicle and went to help those inside. Prosecutors say the driver, Tonia Dockter, kept trying to drive the vehicle to get away and it soon started on fire. She and her 8-year-old son were locked inside the vehicle.
Eventually, when he realized that he was in danger the child jumped into the back seat, unlocked the doors and was able to escape. Those on the scene then dragged Dockter out. They say she smelled strongly of alcohol and had bloodshot eyes.
Police say Dockter claimed she had consumed a few drinks earlier in the day and was on her way to pick up her other child in St. Francis. While being transported to Mercy Hospital for detox officers say Dockter kept asking herself out loud "why do I keep drinking?"
Tonia Dockter has a 2011 conviction for DWI.