On Tuesday, March 21, 2023, the Azcentral reported the arrest of Judge Celé Hancock on suspicion of extreme driving under the influence (DUI).

The Yavapai County Superior Judge was arrested by the Prescott police officers and faces four counts of DUI charges, including Super Extreme DUI. The Prescott police said that they got the call about a possibly impaired driver that led to the arrest of Judge Hancock. The latter was pulled over by a police officer and Judge Hancock showed signs of alcohol consumption.

According to the police, the judge failed several sobriety tests. Her breath tests showed that she initially had a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.158% with later tests at 0.219% and 0.214%. These levels are far above Arizona‘s DUI threshold of 0.08% for drivers. The state law of Arizona defines extreme DUI for drivers who have a blood-alcohol content of 0.15% or higher.

Judge Hancock, was stopped in her white 2023 Toyota Four Runner near South Montezuma and West Carleton streets in Prescott. The citation showed that Judge Hancock was driving 25 mph, which is the posted speed limit. According to Arizona’s Family News report, during the citation, when the officer introduced himself, Judge, Hancock reportedly responded in a quick, slurred speech, saying, “Umm… I’m going back to Safeway to get my wallet.” The officer noticed that her eyes were red, bloodshot, and watering. The officer then told her that someone had reported her being drunk and stumbling inside the store. Hancock denied the accusation and said, “No, no, no, I was just trying to get my prescription.”

The Yavapai County Superior Court Judge was then asked to get out of the car while the officer inquires about her medical history. Judge Hancock revealed that she had a “seizure disorder,” and that she was actually trying to get her medication for the said medical impairment.

After being taken into custody, officers went back into the room and read the implied consent affidavit to Judge Hancock. The arrest report says she took a moment before saying: “Sure, it does not matter. My career is already over.” Two additional breath samples were taken with readings of .219 and .214. A blood draw was successful, and the officer didn’t take a urine sample. Hancock told officers that she wouldn’t answer any further questions with her lawyer present. After processing, she was cited and released.

Deputy Court Administrator Julie Malinowski, in relation to the incident, said in a statement, “The court has a duty to obtain as much information as possible about any criminal allegations related to its personnel, this process is no different for judges. We have begun gathering information.”


Source: Azcentral