Crime

Driver on 6 drugs during wreck that took passenger’s leg, documents say

Wendy Blanton’s Honda Accord rests in the trees off state Route 7 near Graham on June 4. She and her passenger were trapped in the car for approximately seven hours, according to court documents.
Wendy Blanton’s Honda Accord rests in the trees off state Route 7 near Graham on June 4. She and her passenger were trapped in the car for approximately seven hours, according to court documents. Courtesy

The passenger survived a pelvic fracture, nasal bone fractures, a thoracic spine fracture, a traumatic amputation of the leg, respiratory failure, a left femur fracture, fungemia, aortic aneurysm, a ruptured stomach, fractured ribs, kidney failure, a collapsed lung, sepsis, a lacerated liver, a lacerated spleen and ventilator-assisted pneumonia.

The driver’s blood tested positive for amphetamine, methamphetamine, barbiturates and three different anxiety drugs, court records show.

On Wednesday, Wendy Blanton, 42, was charged in Pierce County Superior Court with one count of vehicular assault. Her arraignment is scheduled for Nov. 15.

According to charging documents:

Blanton was driving home from a casino about 2:30 a.m. June 4 with her friend in the passenger seat when she left the road and struck a large tree off state Route 7 at 288th Street East near Graham. She and her friend were trapped in the car and not found until 9 a.m. the next day.

Both women were taken to Tacoma General Hospital for their injuries.

Troopers interviewed Blanton, who initially told them she swerved to avoid an oncoming vehicle and ended up in the woods, where her phone could not call out or receive calls.

After she was found to have been impaired, she was arrested. She told troopers that she swerved to miss a deer, but that didn’t line up with the gentle curve her car made as it missed a corner.

Troopers did find a cement deer near the corner that Blanton’s Honda Accord struck just before hitting a tree.

After that, she told a nurse a gear in her car went out, causing her to go into the woods.

There were no skidmarks on the road and the roadway was dry, which led troopers to deduce she fell asleep at the wheel.

Blanton eventually admitted to smoking methamphetamine, taking barbiturates, oxycodone, Valium and anxiety medication.

Inside her car, troopers found oxycodone and codeine pills, as well as anxiety medication and the barbiturates.

Blood tests showed Blanton had amphetamine, methamphetamine, barbiturates and three different anxiety drugs in her system at the time of the crash.

Kenny Ocker: 253-597-8627, @KennyOcker

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