Woman, 70, facing charge

FAIRMONT — A 70-year-old Luverne woman is facing a felony charge in Martin County.

Elizabeth Jane Blake has been charged with possession of stolen property, which carries a maximum charge on five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

According to the complaint:

On Nov. 22, Martin County Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched the 1400 block of 110th Avenue in rural Martin County on a report from the Rock County Sheriff’s Office about a possible suicidal female, identified as Blake, potentially driving in the area.

One deputy observed a vehicle matching the given description traveling north on 120th Avenue. The deputy observed an object hanging from the rear view mirror and initiated a traffic stop.

The deputy made contact with the driver, who identified herself as Blake. The deputy observed that Blake’s eyes were bloodshot and watery, and she slurred her speech as she talked. The deputy also could smell alcohol coming from Blake.

The deputy asked Blake if she had been drinking, and Blake denied it. Blake acted as if she knew the deputy, though she did not, and explained she was going to see her ex-husband in Waseca and that was why she was on a gravel road in rural Martin County.

A check revealed that Blake was required to have ignition interlock on the vehicle she operates, and her record showed she had several recent violations in regard to the ignition interlock device.

The deputy requested that Blake exit the vehicle, and questioned her about the device. Blake said she did not have one in this vehicle, and admitted to consuming alcohol.

The deputy asked Blake to perform standardized field sobriety tests for him, and he observed numerous signs of impairment.

Blake refused a preliminary breath test and asked if she could shut the truck off and whip the keys into a field. Blake then asked the deputy what if she had “a high tolerance for alcohol.” She was then placed under arrest and transported to the Martin County Jail.

Another deputy secured the vehicle and could observe, in plain view, an open and almost empty container of alcohol in Blake’s purse. He also observed an unopened bottle of alcohol on the passenger floor.

The deputy contacted the Rock County Sheriff’s office and was advised that a stolen vehicle report had been filed by a the vehicle’s registered owner on Nov. 21, indicating Blake had taken it without permission.

At the Martin County Jail, a deputy read Blake the breath test advisory. Blake indicated she understood, and stated she wanted to speak with an attorney. The deputy then provided Blake with a telephone and phone book.

During that time, Blake called her mother and ex-husband. The deputy explained that Blake was to use the time to find an attorney’s number. Blake stated that she was done and did not want to talk to an attorney.

When asked if she would give a breath test, Blake refused and stated she was doing so because she was angry and had the right to refuse.

A check on Blake’s criminal record indicates she was convicted of driving while impaired on Oct. 27, 2016, in Steele County.