Police: Woman let child drive while she was drunk

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Memphis police said an observant motorist helped them get a kid driver off the road before anyone was hurt.

They said the 10-year-old girl was in the car with a woman who was  too drunk to drive.

Josh Staten was driving on South Third street in South Memphis Thursday night when he noticed a car weaving in and out of traffic and was shocked when he realized the person driving was a child.

“Actually in her lap and the woman was laying back. There was no way the other woman could actually see the road ,” said Staten.

He pulled up next to them and told the woman he was calling police.

That’s when the woman got the young girl to swerve the car in  his direction.

Staten followed their car into an AutoZone lot, blocked it in and waited for police.

He said that’s when the woman backed into his car and pepper sprayed him.

“I just turned and the whole time I was talking to the cops I’m getting sprayed with pepper spray,” said Staten.

When police arrived they said Laura Smith, 35, was so drunk that she couldn’t stand on her own and seemed to be in a confused or manic state of mind.

She was charged with child endangerment, reckless driving, DUI and assault for allegedly kicking an officer.

Police refused to say what Smith’s relationship was to the girl, but she was not her mother.

The girl’s mother was called to the scene.

DCS was also notified.




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